With prominent speakers and 600 registered delegates 2nd MENA PENSIONS CONFERENCE held today in Bahrain

Manama, 28 November, 2017 – TAKAUD, the specialist provider of pension, savings and investment solutions for the MENA region, announced that His Excellency Lieutenant General Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Khalifa opened the 2017 MENA Pensions Conference today, greeting delegates and dignitaries from more than a dozen countries.

His Excellency said, “Our country and the GCC have built strong financial and social service sectors and we are committed to supporting improvements in the sustainability of these services. Social care and protection are cornerstones of everything the Government does for the people of this region. “I am glad to see a major congress growing year after year in Bahrain and addressing the critical topic of pensions. This is a crucial aspect of people’s lives and deserves a lot of attention and assured security.”

His Excellency was preceded in addressing the assembly by Mr. Samer Khanachet, Chairman of TAKAUD, who asserted that pensions are not just a good thing, they are essential, providing people with a sense of belonging, of safety, and of confidence in the future. He stated, “This Conference is a direct and clear expression of TAKAUD’s commitment to this region, to the development of thought leadership on the subject of pensions, and to facilitating a wider debate on the evolution of pensions for a better future. We are serious about pensions and we know you share our concern and our desire to help individuals prepare for their later years, and to develop the ways and means to support them in this endeavour.”

The Central Bank of Bahrain was patron of the Conference, which addressed the sustainability of pension benefits through Public-Private Partnerships (P3s), and the need for long-term investment strategies for pension assets. In its opening session, on the Global Pension Outlook: Present & Future, the Conference looked at worldwide challenges being faced by pension systems and how demographic changes are being faced and addressed in various countries. In a session on the landscape for pension investments, the Conference broke new ground as, for the first time, top

government officials charged with investing and managing the billions of pension funds held by regional governments shared their experience and expertise on how these funds should be invested. Pension funds are one of the most important players in financial markets, constituting in excess of 30% of the world’s financial assets. Asset management for pension funds calls for distinct models of asset allocation and investment vehicles that address the needs of both the long-term performance target and short-term liquidity needs.

The Conference examined the impact technology is having on pension administration, as individuals gain the ability to track their pension accounts on line and monitor the performance of pension investments. A full session on the impact and potential of fintech was complemented by a mini-exhibition by fintech companies, whose software and technical solutions power pension administration and management. The Conference also featured three in-depth workshops on options and prospects for expat pensions, the governance of employee savings schemes, and employee benefits and human capital strategies for SMEs.