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Infrastructure, Government/Foreign Direct Investment, Investment and Asset Management, Finance

FT-Oliver Wyman Strategic Forum

Bridging the Infrastructure Gap: Public Private Partnerships in the GCC

Dubai |
Speakers include:
Khaled Mahdi

Khaled Mahdi

Supreme Council for Planning and Development, Kuwait

Muneera  Al Bahar

Muneera Al Bahar

Kuwait Authority for Partnership Projects (KAPP)

Naser Al Rashedi

Naser Al Rashedi

UAE Space Agency


Celebrating 10-years of collaboration, the Financial Times and Oliver Wyman are pleased to partner once again on the 2019 Strategic Forum. This annual event will bring together senior executives, investors, officials from public sector agencies and governments to share best practice on strategies for bridging the infrastructure gap in the GCC and building a new framework for public-private sector collaboration. Hosted under the Chatham House Rule, the format will encourage candid discussion amongst key stakeholders to help facilitate the next generation of transformative PPPs in the region.

fallback Add to my Calendar 10/03/2019 08:00:0010/03/2019 12:45:00falseFT-Oliver Wyman Strategic ForumCelebrating 10-years of collaboration, the Financial Times and Oliver Wyman are pleased to partner once again on the 2019 Strategic Forum. This annual event will bring together senior executives, investors, officials from public sector agencies and governments to share best practice on strategies for bridging the infrastructure gap in the GCC and building a new framework for public-private sector collaboration. Hosted under the Chatham House Rule, the format will encourage candid discussion amongst key stakeholders to help facilitate the next generation of transformative PPPs in the region.FT-Oliver-Wyman-Strategic-Forum4cab918466619a35adad8bf6d9401dc6MM/DD/YYYY

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How Public-Private Partnerships Can Support The Gulf's Economic Development

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For pictures of the 2019 event click here 


Full Overview

Increased infrastructure investment is critical in the region if the GCC states are to meet the rising demands of urban populations and achieve their ambitious plans for economic growth. But unstable oil prices have created a funding deficit which threatens to cause delays to and even cancellations of these important projects. According to a recent report from Oliver Wyman, the pipeline of infrastructure investment over the next five years is planned to be over 1.5 trillion US dollars; so far, the government is contributing about 300 billion US dollars. Even with state owned enterprises and sovereign wealth funds included, the region has a huge deficit. Undoubtedly there is competition for investment, and only those governments best prepared will receive investment.

The potential benefits of Public-Private Sector Partnerships (PPPs) are clear. From a government point of view, new contracting models are lessening financial burdens and increasing the availability of capital to spend elsewhere. On the financing side, new partnerships are providing unique and potentially lucrative opportunities for investors and developers to play a critical role in future infrastructure. But to deliver value for both sides, stakeholders must better align their strategic intent, be willing to take a different approach to risk sharing and collaborate on new kinds of partnerships. What new economic and social benefits can inventive approaches to PPPs bring? How can the next generation of PPPs help the GCC build diversified, innovative and robust economies?

Celebrating 10-years of collaboration, the Financial Times and Oliver Wyman are pleased to partner once again on the FT-Oliver Wyman Strategic Forum. This annual event will bring together senior executives, investors, officials from public sector agencies and governments to share best practice on strategies for bridging the infrastructure gap in the GCC and building a new framework for public-private sector collaboration. Hosted under the Chatham House Rule, the format will encourage candid discussion amongst key stakeholders to help to facilitate the next generation of transformative PPPs in the region.


Agenda - 3rd Oct

  • 8:00am
  • 8:50am

    John Everington, Middle East and Africa Editor, The Banker 

  • 9:00am
    Oliver Wyman Welcome

    Jeff Youssef, Partner- Middle East Public Sector Practice, Oliver Wyman

  • 9:10am
    Keynote Address: Exploring New Opportunities in the GCC

    Khaled Mahdi, Secretary-General, General Secretariat- Supreme Council of Planning and Development of Kuwait

  • 9:40am
    PANEL DISCUSSION 1: Sharing Risk and Reward

    To create long-term value, aligning the expectations of all key stakeholders and subcontractors is essential. How can better collaboration between public and private sector stakeholders bring shared rewards?

    • How can investors demonstrate their suitability for key projects in a competitive tendering landscape?
    • What new regulatory and legislative framework is required to attract investment?
    • What do investors value?
    • How can governments and investors alike identify and evaluate the most suitable form of PPP to embark on? What are the merits and limitations of each model?

    Ahmad AlSabbah, PPP Expert, Ministry of Infrastructure and Development 

    Jonathan Looker, Advisory Sector Lead, Mott MacDonald Middle East

    Adam Pierson, Partner, White and Case

    Sami Neffati, Managing Partner, Investcorp and Aberdeen Standard Investment Joint Venture

    Raed Safadi, Chief Economic Advisor, Dubai Department of Economic Development 

    Moderated by: John Everington, Middle East and Africa Editor, The Banker 

  • 10:40am
  • 11:10am
    KEYNOTE: Building for the Future-Rethinking Infrastructure development in the GCC

    Tim Wilkinson, Executive Director, Strategy Growth Virgin Hyperloop One

  • 11:25am
    CASE STUDY INTERVIEWS and Q&A- Innovative Infrastructure PPPs: Lessons Learned

    These leading infrastructure case studies will showcase the potential economic and social benefits of leveraging private sector capital for future infrastructure. Through using innovative risk sharing agreements and new funding models, these two examples will highlight how PPPs can be used to mitigate risk and improve the efficiency of large-scale infrastructure projects. How can the lessons learnt inspire further investment in the region? How can stakeholders ensure the pipeline is managed efficiently?

    Muneera Al Bahar, Head of Feasibility Studies, Kuwait Authority for Partnerships Projects (KAPP)

    Ibtesam Al Bastaki, Director of Investment and Public-Private Sector Partnerships, Dubai Health Authority (DHA)

    Naser Al Rashedi, UAE Space Agency

    Michael Bueker, Chief Financial Officer, Siemens 

    Munner Ferozie, Regional Head of Transactions Advisory Public-Private Partnerships, MENA International Finance Corporation (IFC)

    Interviewed by: John Everington, Middle East and Africa Editor, The Banker 

  • 12:15pm
    Audience Q&A with Case-Study Speakers
  • 12:25pm
    Closing Summation

    Pedro Oliveria, Managing Partner MEA, Oliver Wyman 

  • 12:35pm
    Chair's Closing Remarks
  • 12:45pm

Speakers (14)

Khaled Mahdi

Khaled Mahdi

Secretary General
Supreme Council for Planning and Development, Kuwait

Khaled A Mahdi is the Secretary-Generalof the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development (GSSCPD) of Kuwait and the Program Director of the Country Plan Action Program of the UN Development Programme (UNDP)in the country. He is a member on several high-level government boards and committees, such as the Public Authority for Industries, the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Researches, the Public Housing Authority, and the National Fund for SME, the Ease of Doing Business and Competitiveness Committee, and the Economic and Fiscal Reform Committee.

Dr Mahdi is responsible for overseeing and promoting the Kuwait National Development Plan, known as New Kuwait 2035. As a part of his effort to enhance planning in the country, he has established four development research centers at GSSCPD:  the Kuwait Public Policy Center (KPPC) with a nudge unit (KPAL), the National Knowledge Economy Center (NKEC), the National Development Research Center (NDRC) and the National Sustainable Development Observatory (NSDO).  

He chairs Kuwait’s National Standing Steering Committee for the Implementation of the UN Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in addition to signing several MoUs with local and international organizations to bolster the GSSCPD’s capacity and to strengthen its relations with strategic partners. 

Dr Mahdi was an Associate Professorin the College of Engineering and Petroleum at Kuwait University where he co-authored more than 65 publications and cofounded SYNERGY, a complex system research group. He also served as an Advisor for the Kuwait University strategic office and the Minister of Planning and Development Affairs office.  

He has a BSc from the University of Toronto, Canada,and a PhDin Chemical Engineering from Northwestern University, USA. He is a Certified Consultant Engineer (CEng), a Project Management Professional (PMP)and PRINCE2, and a certified GCC Arbitrator. He has recently received the People First Leader GCC HR Award for his government services.

Muneera  Al Bahar

Muneera Al Bahar

Head of Feasibility Studies
Kuwait Authority for Partnership Projects (KAPP)

Muneera Al Bahar is Head of Feasibility Studies and Selection of Advisers and Initiatives Department with the main role of managing feasibility studies development, evaluating the economic and technical assessments and provide recommendations on tendering projects. Muneera is also involved in developing PPP Projects concepts and selecting qualified PPP transaction advisors.

Naser Al Rashedi

Naser Al Rashedi

Director of National Space Policy and Regulation
UAE Space Agency

Naser Al Rashedi started his professional career as a Telecom Planning Engineer at the Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (TRA) where he was responsible for the development and coordination of national, regional and international policies regulating ICT. Between 2007-2012, he was appointed as the UAE official representative in Geneva at the UN organisation- The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), where he held several leadership positions at various regional and international committees dealing with crucial matters relating to international ICT policies. In 2012, he joined the National Electronic Security Authority where he addressed strategy and regulatory cybersecurity issues at the National Policy & Planning Department. In May 2015, he was appointed as the Director of National Space Policy and Regulation at the UAE Space Agency. His current role includes developing and maintaining national policy, strategy and regulations for the UAE space sector. In February 2017, he graduated from the UAE-PMO Programme for Chief of Happiness & Positivity focussing on UAE Federal Entities. In March 2018 he was also assigned to oversee the Space Education Program. Naser managed over 32 national and international projects, led the development of 36 national policies and regulations, led and supervised over 62 national and international studies, coordinated the preparation of over 550 contributions in over 200 international conferences. He has held more than 17 leadership positions in national committees, and another 17 in international committees on matters related to ICT, Cyber, and Space. Naser coordinated the government signing of eight international treaties, eleven MoUs, and the join of more than seven international organisations/committees. Naser holds BSc in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California, as well as a postgraduate Executive Master's in International Negotiation and Policy-Making from the Geneva Institute for Graduate Studies.

Ibtesam AlBastaki

Ibtesam AlBastaki

Director of Investment and Public-Private Partnerships
Dubai Health Authority (DHA)

Dr. Ibtesam AlBastaki is currently Director of Investment and Public-Private Partnerships at the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) and is responsible for the development of various health PPP within the Emirates of Dubai. In addition to her main role, she also leads advice and guidance on the best practices for the healthcare industry within the UAE.

Ahmad  AlSabbah

Ahmad AlSabbah

Investment and PPP Expert
Ministry of Infrastructure and Development (MOID)

Mr. Ahmad AlSabbah is an Investment/PPP expert at the Ministry of Infrastructure Development. His sectoral focuses are Investment, Public Private Partnership and commercial transformation. Mr. AlSabbah has held various positions within the public and private sectors and advised number of local and federal entities in GCC & MENA region on the development of PPP strategies and policies. Mr. AlSabbah furthermore worked as an Investment Policies and strategies Manager at Roads & Transport Authority in Dubai and as a PPP advisor at the Executive Privatisation Commission in Jordan. Mr. AlSabbah holds a master’s degree in economics with a minor in accounting from the University of Jordan.

Michael  Bueker

Michael Bueker

Chief Financial Officer
Siemens Middle East

Michael Bueker is the Chief Financial Officer of Siemens Middle East and Siemens LLC United Arab Emirates. Bueker assumed his current role in February 2018 after almost four years as Chief Financial Officer of Siemens Postal, Parcel & Airport Logistics. Born in Essen, Germany, Bueker studied Law and commenced his career in Finance with HVB Group in Germany as Vice President Equity Corporate Finance. With almost 20 years of experience in finance, Bueker started with Siemens in Munich, Germany as a Mergers & Acquisitions Project Manager in 2006. Since then, he has fulfilled a variety of leadership roles in a corporate function and in renewable energy and infrastructure. Prior to working with Siemens, Bueker served as Vice President of Mergers & Acquisitions for the HVB Group in Munich, Germany.

Muneer Ferozie

Muneer Ferozie

Regional Manager, Head of Transaction Advisory Public Private Partnerships, MENA
International Finance Corporation (IFC)

Muneer Ferozie is the Regional Manager and Head of IFC’s Infrastructure PPP Transaction Advisory business for the Middle East and North Africa region.  In this capacity, he leads the regional team and advises the governments across the MENA region on sell-side financial advisory mandates for structuring and implementing public-private partnerships (PPPs) and privatisations in the infrastructure sector.

Sami  Neffati

Sami Neffati

Managing Partner
Investcorp and Aberdeen Standard Investment Joint Venture

Sami Neffati is an investor and financier who most recently held the position of Assistant General Manager of Energy at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation in London. Emerging markets specialist with long experience in the MENA region, he headed business development for Africa and led teams working on financing projects in renewable, power generation, transmission and distribution. Sami was an advisor to numerous projects in the MENA region and to Japanese conglomerates on African markets penetration strategy Worked on Acquisition of infrastructure assets in Western Europe and the Nordics and focused on new and technology-driven areas in energy, energy transition in Europe and development of energy storage and battery solutions, electrical vehicles infrastructure. Sami led a team managing a US$25bn assets portfolio. He has a vast experience working with global and Asian institutional investors investing in infrastructure. Sami is also an Islamic Finance specialist and he helped build a global Islamic Finance desk for Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation. Sami was educated in Tunisia, Canada and the United States of America and speaks Arabic, English, French and Spanish. He is a panellist and guest speaker in international conferences.

Adam Pierson

Adam Pierson

White & Case

Adam Pierson is a partner in White & Case’s Saudi Arabia practice (seconded to the Law Firm of AlSalloum and AlToaimi, with which White & Case practices in association), and a member of the Energy, Infrastructure, Project and Asset Finance group. While working in London, Adam advised on some of the UK's most significant infrastructure projects and programs, including the UK's Channel Tunnel Rail Link (HS1), the Building Schools for the Future Program and other social and transport infrastructure PPPs. In the Middle East since 2012, Adam has advised on several mega- and award-winning projects, including the US$20 billion world-scale integrated Sadara Petrochemical Complex, the world's largest industrial gas complex in Jazan, the Hassyan Clean Coal Project and the US$22 billion Riyadh Metro Project, as well as leading numerous PPP-style utilities and infrastructure projects for Saudi Aramco. He is currently advising on the privatisation of the Saline Water Conversion Company, PPPs in the transport and schools sector, a series of residential camps and other infrastructure projects, as well as on the financing of one of the Kingdom’s landmark giga-projects.

Pedro Oliveira

Pedro Oliveira

Geo Head (MEA)
Oliver Wyman

Pedro Oliveira is Oliver Wyman’s Geo Head for Middle East and Africa. He has 20+ years of international experience in investment banking and management consulting, assuming leadership positions with P&L and country-level responsibilities.

Within consulting, Mr Oliveira focussed on the communications sector, leading global, strategic and operational projects. He has also worked in investment banking, specialising in the capital markets area at Deutsche Bank and Santander Investment.

Raed Safadi

Raed Safadi

Chief Economic Advisor
Dubai's Department of Economic Development

Raed Safadi is the Chief Economic Advisor at Dubai’s Department of Economic Development where he leads a team of experts entrusted with the implementation of Dubai’s Strategic Plan 2021, and promoting the diversification and sustainable growth of Dubai and its transformation into a knowledge-based economy. Dr. Raed is a leading expert on development economics and has extensive experience advising governments on economic policy and management. He has published an extensive array of books and articles covering such areas as economic development, regional trading arrangements and the world trading system, tariffs and non-tariff barriers, special and differential treatment, trade and environment, services trade, and global value chains. His most recent publication Inclusive Global Value Chains focuses on making GVCs more inclusive by overcoming participation constraints for SMEs and facilitating access for low income developing countries. Dr. Raed has previously worked for the OECD, the World Bank, ESCWA and as a consultant for numerous governments, regional development banks and UN agencies.

Christopher Seymour

Christopher Seymour

Managing Director
Mott MacDonald Middle East

Chris Seymour has more than 30 years’ experience in the industry and manages the 1300 strong Mott MacDonald operation in the Middle East. Having worked in most of the major cities in the Middle East region over the last 10 years he specialises in commercial, leisure, hospitality and healthcare sectors plus infrastructure and Oil and Gas. Chris is a member of the RICS MENAT Market Advisory Panel, and also sits on the Investment Committee of ENBD REIT and is an active member of the IPFA. Having spent many years in PFI and PPP procurement practising in both UK and Middle East he also advises many clients on strategy, risk, commercial and technical advice for large public-sector investments

Tim Wilkinson

Tim Wilkinson

Executive Director, Strategy & Growth
Virgin Hyperloop One

Tim Wilkinson has worked for Virgin Hyperloop One since 2016 when the company first arrived in the Arabian Gulf from its base in Los Angeles, USA as part of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum’s Dubai Accelerator Program (for start-ups). Mr Wilkinson has led the international engagement for the company in Europe, Asia and throughout the Gulf during that time and is currently focused on working with the leaderships in Saudi Arabia and the UAE to bring hyperloop routes and manufacturing to the Arabian Gulf. Mr Wilkinson believes in a vision for a hyperloop connected Gulf to drive productivity, job creation, ultra-fast travel and the leap-frogging to the 4 the industrial revolution for the region and for the countries of the Gulf to be the world’s first hyperloop adopters. Prior to working with Virgin Hyperloop One Mr Wilkinson was Middle East chairman of international public relations firm Bell Pottinger; he also enjoyed a two-year posting as communications director to the Technical Office for HH the Prime Minister of Kuwait and prior to that he led global communications for The Coca-Cola Company in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

Jeff Youssef

Jeff Youssef

Partner- Middle East Public Sector Practice
Oliver Wyman

Jeff Youssef has nearly twenty years of operational and consulting experience holding senior management positions in leading international companies across several countries including resolving board-level issues. He specifically specialises in public sector specifically in privatisation and labour reform. He is also part of the TICG management team, Oliver Wyman’s JV with Kuwait Investment Authority. 


Chair (1)

John  Everington

John Everington

Middle East and Africa Editor
The Banker

John Everington is Middle East and Africa editor. Prior to joining The Banker, John was the deputy business editor of The National in the United Arab Emirates, and has also worked for Dealreporter, Arab News and The Telegraph. He has also covered the telecom sector in Africa and the Middle East, living and working in Qatar and the UK. John has a BA in Arabic and History and an MA in Middle Eastern Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London.

Who Attends?

 This high-level event is tailored for senior executives from the following sectors:

  • Government agencies
  • Financial services: (Commercial bank financing, Capital markets financing (local/ international), Equity funds, Export credit agencies, Development finance institutions, Bilateral agencies, Multilateral Development Banks, Sovereign wealth funds)
  • Construction
  • Transportation and infrastructure
  • Health and Life Sciences
  • Telco, IT and Digital sectors.   

Attendance is complimentary, subject to meeting the above criteria and approval from the publisher.


Why Attend?

  • Discover new infrastructure investment opportunities in the region to make more informed spending decisions 
  • Consider the new regulatory and legislative frameworks required to attract and sustain investment in the GCC
  • Learn from leading regional and international infrastructure case studies in order to create more robust planning strategies for future PPPs
  • Network and learn from other senior decision-makers from across the GCC who may not attend other public forums
  • Explore the wider economic and social impact of new infrastructure PPPs in the region through high-level panel discussions and interviews facilitated by a senior FT journalist. 


Madinat Jumeirah Conference and Events Centre, Murjaan ballroom
PO Box 75157


Presented By (3)

Oliver Wyman is a global leader in management consulting. With offices in 60 cities across 29 countries, Oliver Wyman combines deep industry knowledge with specialized expertise in strategy, operations, risk management, and organization transformation. The firm has more than 5,000 professionals around the world who work with clients to optimize their business, improve their operations and risk profile, and accelerate their organizational performance to seize the most attractive opportunities. Oliver Wyman is a wholly owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies [NYSE: MMC].

For more information, visit
Follow Oliver Wyman on Twitter @OliverWyman.

The Financial Times is one of the world’s leading business news organisations, recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. The FT has a record paying readership of one million, three-quarters of which are digital subscriptions. It is part of Nikkei Inc., which provides a broad range of information, news and services for the global business community.

The Banker provides economic and financial intelligence for the world's financial sector and has built a reputation for objective and incisive reporting. It leads the debate on all the issues surrounding the global banking industry, providing in-depth news and analysis, exclusive interviews with senior industry figures and definitive regional bank listings, including the internationally acclaimed Top 1000 World Banks.

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