Skip to Content | Skip to Navigation
Welcome to the United Nations. It's your world!

Second International Business Forum

Doha, Qatar, 28 November 2008 (9:00 am - 7:00 pm)

The Business Sector Steering Committee with support from the Financing for Development Office of the United Nations and the Government of Qatar organized the second International Business Forum, which took place at La Cigale Hotel on 28 November 2008.

The Impact of the Financial Crisis & Proposed Roadmaps: Leveraging Official and Private Sector Resources for Development


The Business Sector Steering Committee, with support from the Financing for Development Office of the United Nations and the Government of Qatar, organized the second International Business Forum, which took place on 28 November 2008. Business leaders and their public sector partners presented performance to date, and proposals that serve to implement the Monterrey Consensus objective of mobilizing private sector resources and contribute to widespread development across all developing countries. The Business Forum provided key guidance to leading decision makers in the official sector and development banks on how to further improve private sector participation in development, and enabled candid discussion on critical actions that need to be taken to reach optimal widespread development results.


The Financing for Development Business Forum was designed to allow leaders of the public and private sectors to design sustainable win-win "Roadmaps for Development" that promote public-private collaboration, mobilization of private sector resources for development, and increase aid effectiveness, leveraging limited ODA.


Invited participants included senior delegations of all country governments from ministries of finance, foreign affairs, and economy/commerce; senior officials of development banks and agencies; and leaders of the private sector, civil society, and foundations.


9:00 am - 9:30 am
Welcoming Remarks

  • H.E. Mr. Sheikh Fahed bin Jassim Al Thani, Minister of Business and Trade, State of Qatar
  • Mr. Mohamed bin Towar Al Kowary, Vice Chair of Qatar Chamber of Commerce
  • Ms. Louise Kantrow, Chair, FfD Business Sector Steering Committee and Permanent Representative to the UN for the International Chamber of Commerce
  • Mr. Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, President, African Business Roundtable and Chairman NEPAD Business Group

9:30 am - 10:30 am
Opening Plenary: Assessing the Global Financial System and Next Steps for Ensuring Stable Financial Flows for Development

Developing country governments, development agencies, and donors need to understand the dimensions and magnitude of the current financial crisis, and the actions they need to take to increase financial stability and aid effectiveness. Private sector companies need to know how they can manage risk and also contribute as corporate citizens to development. In this plenary, leading authorities provided their views on the current global financial situation, and actions the public and private sectors can take to increase their capacity to ensure a stable global financial system that delivers development results across all developing countries.

MODERATOR: Ms. Barbara Samuels, President, Samuels Associates; Founder, Global Clearinghouse; Vice-Chair, FfD Business Sector Steering Committee

  • Mr. Angel Gurria, Secretary-General of OECD
  • Mr. Justin Lin, Senior Vice President and World Bank Chief Economist
  • Mr. Avinash Persaud, Chairman, Intelligence Capital Limited; Member, UN Commission on Credit Crunch and Implications for Global Development
  • Ms. Henrietta H. Fore, Administrator for the US Agency for International Development and Director of US Foreign Assistance

DISCUSSANTS: Ms. Silvina Vatnick, President, Center for Financial Stability; Mr. Uwe Bott, President, Cross-Border Finance


10:30am – 11:30am
Panel One: Proposals for Building a Stable Public-Private Framework for Development

The current global financial crisis underscores the importance of building stable sustainable public-private frameworks for development. In an interdependent world, institutional and policy frameworks must be designed to promote widespread economic growth, and reduce the risks associated with an increasingly complex, interdependent global financial and economic relationships. The Monterrey Consensus set forth critical actions towards this end, through enhanced information, transparency, and analytics for improved risk management and sustainable investment decision-making and private sector consultation. This panel presented specific proposals aimed at improving public-private frameworks for development, increasing the transparency and stability of the global financial system and its underlying economy, and the capacity of both investors and policymakers to access needed information for risk management, investment decision-making, and economic growth.

MODERATOR: Mr. Khalil Hamdani, Special Adviser on South Business Forum, South Centre

DISCUSSANTS (Discussion of proposals & how to implement): Mr. Robert Bestani, President, Martin Consulting; former head, Private Sector, Asia Development Bank; Mr. Ufo Eric-Atuanya, Managing Partner, Rimsom Associates; Mr. Carl Linaburg, Founder, Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, Inc.


11:30am – 1:30 pm Prayer Break/Lunch


1:30pm – 3:00pm
Panel Two: Proposals for Building Business-Enabling Environments and Enhancing Donor Effectiveness

The foundation for all growth resides in the capacity of governments to create a business-enabling environment. The Accra Agenda for Action states the need for strengthening country ownership, effective partnership, and accounting for development results. This panel presented specific proposals that increase the capacity of developing country governments to work on an ongoing daily basis with their private sector and civil society to create sustainable national development plans, and reduce investment impediments to allow wide-based economic growth and job creation. These organizing frameworks also increase the capacity of donors to align their activities in support of national and regional development, enhancing aid effectiveness.

MODERATOR: Mr. Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, President, African Business Roundtable and Chairman, NEPAD Business Group

DISCUSSANTS: Mr. James Mutende, Senior Executive Official, Uganda Investment Authority Investment; Mr. Michael Gestrin, Senior Economist and Program Manager, Global Forum on International Investment, OECD; Mr. John Sullivan, Executive Director, Center for International Private Enterprise; Mr. Ashraf El-Rabiey, Minister Counselor and Head of Trade and Economic Office, Egyptian Embassy, Washington, DC and Chairman of the International Cotton Advisory Committee


3:00pm – 4:30pm
Panel Three: Proposals for Leveraging Limited ODA with Private Capital: Proposals for Advancing Infrastructure, Domestic Capital Markets, and Venture Capital

The current global economic downturn underscores the urgent need to increase aid effectiveness by leveraging responsible private sector resources. The Accra Agenda for Action states the need for more effective partnerships, and accounting for development results. The FfD World Economic Forum Report "Building on the Monterrey Consensus: The Untapped Potential of Development Finance Institutions to Catalyse Private Investment" states that today multilateral development banks have enough resources to use risk mitigation services to harness over $US 500 billion of private capital for infrastructure projects. This panel set out specific proposals for development agencies and governments to more effectively mobilize private sector resources for infrastructure projects and other critical development needs.

MODERATORS: Tom Watson, Project Manager, World Economic Forum and Barbara Samuels, President, Samuels Associates & Vice-Chair, Business Sector Steering Committee

DISCUSSANTS: Mr. Richard Carey, Director, Development Cooperation Directorate, OECD; Robert Bestani, President, Martin Consulting and Former Head Private Sector, ADB; Ms. Diana Smallridge, President, International Financial Consulting; Pradeep Singh, Vice-Chairman, Infrastructure Development Finance Company; The Honorable Carole Brookins, Managing Director, Public Capital Advisors, LLC and Former US Executive Director, World Bank; Mr. Majid Sabbagh Kermani, Senior Economic Adviser, Islamic Corporation for the Development of Private Sector


4:30pm – 6:00pm
Panel Four: New Paradigms for Development Finance

The Monterrey Consensus underlines the importance of mobilizing finance for small and medium sized companies, and increasing access to finance for the poor. New priorities also need to be added to the Monterrey Agenda, in particular climate and water challenges and promoting an aligned business paradigm that enables business to be responsible, sustainable, and complimentary to government, as an engine for sustainable development. This panel set forth actionable proposals for developing country governments, development agencies, and the private sector that enable greater success in meeting these emerging challenges.

MODERATOR: Mr. Herman Mulder, Independent Advisor, former Head of Group Risk Management, ABN AMRO Bank, and Vice-Chair Business Sector Steering Committee

  • Integrating SMEs into the Value Chain
    Ms. Ricarda McFalls, Managing Director, Development Focus Area, World Business Council for Sustainable Development
  • Proposal for Sustainable Finance
    Mr. Jason Goldberg, Executive Director, Edge-Leading Explosive Growth
  • New Business Development Concepts for the Indian Poor
    Mr. Nachiket Mor, President, ICICI Foundation for Inclusive Growth
  • Yes, We Can: Youth, Entrepreneurship, Sustainability
    Ms. Poonam Ahluwalia, President, Youth Employment Systems
  • Innovative Funding for Digital Development
    Mr. Kamran Elahian, President, Global Catalyst Partners

DISCUSSANTS: Mr. David Elliot, Afghanistan Small and Medium Enterprise Development, USAID; Ms. Julie Cheng, Blue Orchard; Mr. Umaru Mutallab Con, Chairman, First Bank Nigeria Plc


6:00pm – 7:00pm

All stakeholders were asked to propose how best to follow-up with FfD to insure broad based development results. What is an optimal framework for FfD Follow-Up and what action steps are required of developing country governments, development agencies and the private sector to enable successful FfD Implementation?

Summary of FfD Business Follow-Up Proposals

Ms. Louise Kantrow, Chair, FfD Business Steering Committee and Mr. Ahmed Sheta, Secretary General, Qatar Chamber of Commerce & Industry

Q & A

An open discussion led by the Chair and Vice Chairs of the Business Sector Steering Committee: Ms. Louise Kantrow, Mr. Herman Mulder, and Ms. Barbara Samuels


Financing for Development Office: 2 U.N. Plaza (DC2-2170), New York, N.Y. 10017 | Telephone: 212-963-2587 | Fax: 212-963-0443 | Website: