The WAIPA World Investment Conference (WIC) 2014 has successfully ended with a decision to move headquarters to Istanbul
With much zeal and fervour, 86 Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) attended WAIPA’s main 3-day annual event in Istanbul, Turkey at the Four Seasons Bosphorus Hotel.
In its 19th edition, now under the presidency of Invest in Turkey (ISPAT), WAIPA WIC14 Istanbul drew an audience of approximately 200 international delegates, eager to learn of WAIPA 2015 Strategy, the center-piece of which being the relocation of the organization’s headquarters from Geneva to a more cost effective location.
The Russian Federation, represented by the Minister of the Regional Development Igor Slyunyaev and the Russian Investment Agency “Invest in Russia” took part in the annual meeting of WAIPA for the first time. The management of the Russian Investment Agency participated in the voting held at the conference on the location of headquarters of WAIPA.
Out of a General Assembly of 86 IPA Members present, 82 voted (almost unanimously) to move the offices to Istanbul, the city known for its connectivity and one that is emerging as one of the leading financial centers for the world.
The conference was attended by from notables around the world as well as government dignitaries of Turkey including, Mr. Huseyin Avni MUTLU, Governor of Istanbul and HE Mehmet SIMSEK, Minister of Finance of the Republic of Turkey. The Finance Minister reviewed Turkey’s economic accomplishments since 2002.
The member IPAs networked with peers from around the world, with whom they cooperate and share best practices. They also had the opportunity to meet with the Turkish business community in a welcome dinner. WAIPA has been central, through its annual conferences, to keep the momentum of cooperation among government-linked agencies vis-a-vis cross-border investments.
Taking Stock and Moving Forward was the theme around which discussions centered. In three interactive plenary sessions, panellists renowned for their expertise in investment explored: Concerted Action in FDI Strategy and Policy, The Emerging and Established Sources of FDI and In-Country Reality and Outside Perception.
President of WAIPA and Invest in Turkey (ISPAT), Mr. Ilker Ayci thanked the General Assembly for their vote of confidence in his agency and in Turkey reiterating his strategic vision as being “in the real sense, to raise WAIPA’s profile as the reference point to all global discourse on investment”. The headquarters’ physical move should take place no later than January 2015, at which point implementation of the 5-year strategic plan should gather momentum.