World Leaders Open International Conference on Energy Issues and the Middle East in Qatar


Date: January 29, 2006
Contact: Nancy Ozeas ( nozeas@support.ucla.edu )
Phone: 310-794-8903

Doha, Qatar ó World leaders today opened the international conference, "The Power of Prosperity: An Opportunity for Growth, Development, and Reform in the Middle East" in Doha, Qatar. The conference, co-sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Qatar and the UCLA Ronald W. Burkle Center for International Relations, will focus on key economic issues in the region, including energy security, Asia's emerging role in the petroleum market and the Middle East's impact on the global marketplace.
"The economic and regional stability of the Middle East is of vital importance to the entire world community, and as events in this region are rapidly progressing, it is important that leaders from around the world join together in a dialogue focused on tackling challenges and employing solutions," said President Bill Clinton.

President Bill Clinton, who will speak at the conference Monday morning, and His Excellency Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jabr Al-Thani, first deputy prime minister and foreign minister, are among the high-ranking international leaders from the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East attending and speaking at the three-day conference.

"The government of Qatar is pleased to host this group of international leaders to discuss critical issues of importance to us all," said His Excellency Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jabr Al-Thani, first deputy prime minister and foreign minister of the state of Qatar.

"Enriching the Middle East's Economic Future' will explore the ways that the region can better utilize rising oil revenues. Economic progress can lead to social and political benefits, the advancement of democratization, and to a lessening of conflict and hostility region-wide," said Steven L. Spiegel, UCLA political scientist and conference chair for the Burkle Center.

The Conferences Organizing Committee at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs organizes the following conferences annually: "The U.S. Muslim World Forum," "A Dialogue Between Religions," "Democracy, Development and Free Trade" and "NATO and Security in the Gulf."

The Ronald W. Burkle Center for International Relations is an integral part of the UCLA International Institute, which provides the highest quality policy analysis on the most pressing problems on the global geopolitical landscape that affect American foreign policy. The center's work includes research, teaching, and public outreach and service on the contemporary world and the role of the United States in global security, military, political, social and economic affairs. For more information on the Burkle Center for International Relations and the conference visit our Web site at http://www.international.ucla.edu/bcir/doha/.