Cynthia Dearin, of Dearin Associates, former Australian diplomat and author of “Camels, Sheikhs and Billionaires” shared her experiences of the Middle East and North Africa Region at the 16th November forum.
Working in the region, Cynthia found it was much more diverse and livable than anticipated. Being a business woman was not as difficult as expected, however status and hierarchy are important.
There is strong economic growth, with GDP surpassing Australia. The population is exploding with a higher birth rate and in Asia and 350 million people with more than half under the age of 25.
With an emerging middle class, better education and being connected globally there are opportunities in food, technology, services, education and health care.
Top Tips for successful business and social interactions
- Keep an open mind
- Building relationships and trust
- There is “unlimited sand and time”!
- Patience is key
Surprisingly, many in the audience had done business or were exploring opportunities in the middle east. As with any new market, getting the right advice, and having business and government connections is key.
You can download a copy of Cynthia Dearin’s book “Camels, Sheikhs and Billionaires” here