Monday, April 1, 2019 - 10:30
The sixth Sulaimani Forum took place March 6-7, 2019 at American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) under the title “Iraq and Its Neighbors: Toward a New Regional Order.” This year’s event featured key policymakers, stakeholders, and experts from near and far for two days of thought-provoking debates and discussions on the most pressing issues facing the Middle East. Conversations moved beyond conflict analysis to explore factors necessary for stabilization, good governance, and economic growth in Iraq and the broader region.
This Forum featured high-level plenary sessions—conversations between senior international and national officials and experts that examined new regional economic, security, and political frameworks, all with a focus on Iraq. Discussions also focused on major challenges facing Iraq and how to address them: the youth population; energy infrastructure; private sector growth and investment; rehabilitation of liberated territories; water scarcity; and the protection and empowerment of minority religious and ethnic communities.
A number of policy roundtables were also held on the sidelines of the Forum, bringing together experts and officials to tackle specific issues such as private enterprise growth, Mosul reconstruction, and new developments among Iraq's security actors.
This year’s Forum welcomed H.E. Dr. Barham Salih, President of Iraq; Minister of Oil Thamir Al Ghadhban; Minister of Electricity Luay Al Khateeb; and Minister of Culture Abdulamir Al Hamdani, among other dignitaries and officials from the federal government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government. Jordanian Minister of Industry and Trade Tariq Hammouri joined the Forum for a discussion of regional economic cooperation, along with other regional officials such as former Secretary General of the Arab League Amre Moussa. The senior leadership of UNAMI, UNITAD, IFC, the World Bank, and major companies such as GE, Siemens, BP, Total and Chevron were also in attendance.
Experts such as The National's Mina Al Oraibi, USIP and the New Yorker’s Robin Wright, CNN and New America’s Peter Bergen, and others also participated in the Forum’s sessions in addition to ambassadors from a wide range of diplomatic representations to Iraq.