Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Let's get our act together, Najib tells Muslim world

Muslim nations need to continuously work together in finding new ways to strengthen sustainable economic growth, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He said the Muslim world must continue to emphasise that they are peaceful nations and a source of global prosperity despite the recent negative reports involving certain Muslim countries.

“Our potential is enormous if we organise and get our act together,” he said when addressing participants at the ADFIMI-SME Bank International Development Forum 2014 at a hotel here on Tuesday.

The forum, attended by financing professionals, policy makers and market players, was organised by the ADFIMI (Association of National Development Finance Institutions In Member Countries Of The Islamic Development Bank) and SME Bank.

Najib, who is also Finance Minister, said while there remain obstacles to the development of the Muslim population, Islamic countries have generally made remarkable progress.

“Many Muslim countries have transformed themselves in the past decades to become hubs and sources of prosperity.

“These include in the areas of logistics, oil and gas, services and Islamic finance.

“This is why we need to continuously explore working together to challenge ourselves and develop revolutionary methods on how entrepreneurs can leverage on each other to contribute significantly to the nation’s economic growth,” he said.

Najib pointed out that member nations of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) have become a significant group in the global economy.

“The total Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of OIC countries has grown 25.3% over the period between 2008 and 2012.

“From US$7.5 trillion in 2008, it reached US$9.4 trillion in 2012,” he said, quoting statistics from the 2013 report of the Statistical Economic and Social Research and Training Centre for Islamic Countries.

The forum attracted speakers from various nations including Yemen, Turkey, Indonesia, Qatar, Bahrain, Uganda, Iran, Malaysia and Oman.

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