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Wednesday, 27 February 2013

UNIDO delegation led by the Director General visits Kingdom of Bahrain

MANAMA, 27 February 2013 – During a three-day visit to the Kingdom of Bahrain, a UNIDO delegation, led by Director General, Kandeh K. Yumkella, was received by His Majesty the King, and met with Government officials, including the ministers of Finance, Foreign Affairs and Agriculture, as well as with Shaikh Abdalla Bin Rashid, Governor of the Southern Governorate, and with the CEO of Bahrain’s Environmental Agency.

The UNIDO delegation included Fatou Haidara, Director of Policymaking Organs and External Relations; Mohamad Eisa, Representative in  South Africa; and Gerardo Patacconi, Chief of the Cluster and Business Linkages Unit; as well as Hashim Hussein, Head of the Investment and Technology Promotion Office (ITPO) in Bahrain.

Yumkella updated His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa on UNIDO activities in Bahrain and on developments since his last visit in 2012.

His Majesty blessed the establishment of the Health and Wellness Cluster programme, part of the so-called Green Lifestyle project launched by UNIDO, and affirmed that the project falls in line with the progress of Bahrain's development, and contributes to supporting the national economy and the commercial and economic activity that have made the Kingdom a hub for many companies and institutions.

The King expressed his sincere thanks and appreciation to UNIDO for converting the Arab Regional Center for Entrepreneurship and Investment Training into an International Center, and expressed his full support for the launch of the King Hamad International Entrepreneurs Award.

The King also congratulated the Director General on his recent appointment as Special Representative for Sustainable Energy for All and Chief Executive Officer of the new UN initiative, and expressed full support for Yumkella in his new endeavour.

The Director General and Her Royal Highness the Queen inaugurated the 2013 Bahrain International Garden Show, a flagship annual horticultural and agribusiness event.

Under the patronage of Hassan Bin Abdulla Fakhro, the Minister of Industry and Commerce, Director General Yumkella inaugurated the UNIDO Arab International Center for Entrepreneurship and Investment in the presence of some two hundred entrepreneurs, officials, ambassadors and representatives of regional and international development funds.

UNIDO, in cooperation with the Islamic Bank, and the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa, sponsored 30 agro-entrepreneurs from 12 countries to display their products at the show. Over 40 companies, in cooperation with ITPO Italy, presented their latest technologies in agro-business as part of the UNIDO booth.

Her Royal Highness expressed her deep gratitude for the support UNIDO had provided through its SME branch and the ITPO in Bahrain over the past decade.

Bahrain Government officials expressed their interest in working with the UNIDO ITPO to establish a regional health and wellness cluster. A series of events have already been held in the country since last year, in cooperation with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, the Ministry of Health, and the Chamber of Commerce.

The UNIDO delegation also held discussions on the development of a waste management programme that would include an eco-city and an annual green technology forum, and met the President of the Arabian Gulf University to discuss future research collaboration on social and economic issues relevant to the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

For more information, please contact:

Hashim Hussein

Head of ITPO Bahrain

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