India’s Foreign Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar at IGF UAE 2022 Image Credit: Supplied

Since the elevation of the UAE-India relationship to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, there have been giant strides in the realisation of the limitless potential between the two countries - be it the historic signing of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement or the coming together at multilateral fora like I2U2 or BRICS. Over the last two years, India Global Forum’s (IGF) flagship event in UAE showcased the breadth and strength of the India-UAE collaboration. Now in its third edition, IGF is set to return to UAE with a revamped, expanded programme - IGF Middle East and Africa (ME&A).

While its roots remain in the UAE, IGF ME&A will have a global outlook that extends beyond the Middle East to encompass Africa as well. This shift mirrors the changed geopolitical landscape with the Global South becoming a critical player, both economically and strategically.

India, the Middle East and Africa are driving change in a multipolar world. India has pioneered frugal innovation, Africa has the resources, demographics and market size to grow exponentially, whilst the UAE and wider Middle East region are key sources of capital and logistics to boost trade flows between each market. IGF ME&A will explore opportunities for further collaboration and growth between these regions across the fields of trade, investment, innovation, technology, and sustainability.

How can the economies of the Middle East, India and Africa work together more cohesively? How can the inclusive financing power of the Middle East and India be channelled into new frontiers in Africa? Spanning four days, IGF ME&A will convene business leaders, policymakers, and thought leaders from India, UAE and Africa for a series of panel discussions and keynote speeches to examine these questions, among several others.

Commenting on the upcoming event, IGF Founder and Chairman, Manoj Ladwa said, “At IGF UAE 2022, India’s Foreign Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar aptly said the India-UAE relationship is ambitious because it's not limited by its bilateral possibilities, but will also make itself felt at the global level. Indeed, that it what we are witnessing today with extended co-operation across newer avenues such as the historic India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor. I believe India and UAE can unlock a new chapter of their relationship by joining forces in the African continent, where there is significant untapped strategic potential. Indeed, IGF ME&A will be the catalyst for this collaboration, and showcase the limitless opportunities presented by the coming together of the Global South.”

One such avenue for co-operation is climate change mitigation. Despite having some of the lowest carbon emissions, Africa is the most vulnerable continent to climate change. This in turn, will have catastrophic repercussions on its economies, public health, agriculture, and developmental goals.

“The collective leadership that can be offered by India, UAE and Africa in addressing this will reflect a commitment not only to regional prosperity but also to global environmental stewardship,” observed Ladwa.

To this end, IGF ME&A’s Climate for Business (ClimB) Summit, strategically timed on the eve of the CoP 28 Summit in Dubai, will explore the convergence of climate leadership, policy strategies and green technologies for the promotion of sustainable economic growth.

Recognising the role of technology in not just environmental solutions, but also other shared global challenges, IGF ME&A will offer a platform for innovators across the world to engage with each other and spotlight cutting edge technologies and funding innovations in emerging markets via the Founders and Funders Forum. The event will showcase how the Global South is rewriting the rules of development, embracing modern solutions to address age-old issues, and positioning themselves at the forefront of progress on the global stage by leveraging leapfrog innovation.

Undoubtedly, women have had a significant role to play in this too. Under the theme “inspiring to aspire” the WomenIN Forum at IGF ME&A, will spotlight women at the forefront of innovation and leadership, underlining the significance of several key elements that empower and drive their success.

Also at IGF ME&A are the flagship programmes, IGF Studio and IGF Forum.

IGF Studio is a dynamic broadcast-studio styled platform that will feature celebrated newsroom hosts as moderators and a live audience, amplifying discussions on key sectors within the UAE-India partnership and its broader implications for the Middle East and Africa region, with the goal of building actionable strategies to foster global growth and security. With key stakeholders and decisions makers, IGF Forum will examine how businesses and governments can leverage their resources and expertise to drive sustainable economic development, enhance regional stability, and promote mutual understanding and cooperation.

“By strengthening global partnerships and exploring possible synergies between India, the Middle East, and Africa, we are setting the stage for a brighter, more inclusive future where voices from all corners of the globe are heard,” remarked Ladwa.

IGF Middle East & Africa 2023: Unleashing Ambitions takes place from 26-29 November 2023 in the UAE.


When? Nov 26-Nov 29 2023

Where: Taj Exotica, The Palm, Dubai

What is it: Spanning 3 days and featuring 120+ speakers, IGF ME&A invites global decision makers, business leaders, and founders and funders to discus and showcase opportunities in the fields of business, technology, talent, trade and investment.

About India Global Forum: IGF is the gateway for businesses and nations providing unmatched access to key stakeholders and policymakers

Can I attend in person? Yes. To book your tickets, click here

Who are the Speakers? For full programme schedule and list of speakers, click here