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January 01, 2000 | English
MDF3 - Voices for Change Partners for Prosperity

.The Mediterranean Development Forum (MDF) partnership began in 1997 and was comprised of nine think tanks from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), the United Nations Development Program, and the World Bank Institute. The partnership is dedicated to providing policy support for development actors, building the capacity of researchers and think tanks, and creating networks in the MENA region. This work culminates in a forum held every 18 months, with the third meeting of the Mediterranean Development Forum (MDF3) taking place in March in Cairo, Egypt. This conference brought together over 600 leading figures from business, government, academia, NGOs, media, broader civil society, and international and regional agencies. Based on the theme "Voices for Change, Partners for Prosperity", MDF3 emphasized the importance of an inclusive approach to change fueled by forging innovative partnerships to create new opportunities for economic and social progress in the MENA region.

In line with the MDF tradition, MDF3 was planned and organized by the nine MENA think tanks and policy centers that form the MDF partnership, three associate partner institutions, the World Bank's Economic Development Institute and the United Nations Development Program. It was hosted by the Egyptian government. Together, these groups aimed to create an event that was interactive and focused on improving the region's record in fighting poverty, upgrading its institutions, increasing investment, and encouraging individual initiative.

To this end, the forum was centered around seven workshops that focused on critical issues facing the MENA region: global trade and regionalism, institutional reform, firm competitiveness, civil society, knowledge and education, financing development, and labor markets. In addition, MDF3 included plenary sessions delivered by eminent leaders and thinkers from the region and beyond and hosted side meetings, which provided opportunities for networking between specific groups such as mayors, ministers of trade and women entrepreneurs.

This booklet is set out to reflect the core of the remarkable discussions, findings and people that made up MDF3 by providing a succinct summary of the central themes of the event and its conclusions for the region. Recognizing that debate and policy formulation cannot succeed without dedicated action, we hope this booklet will serve as a reminder and inspiration to all participants of the MDF3 and the larger development community.

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