The relevance of strategic studies for governments and businesses discussed at Bahrain British Business Forum meeting
Bahrain British Business Forum (BBBF) hosted its monthly networking meeting featuring keynote speaker Lt. Gen. (Retd) Sir Tom Beckett KCB CBE, Executive Director of International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS). The Chairman of the BBBF, Mr. Khalid Al Zayani OBE, welcomed Sir Tom, H.E. Simon Martin CMG, the British Ambassador to Bahrain, and 100 forum members and their guests to the meeting held at the Diplomat Radisson Blu Hotel.
In his address, Sir Tom discussed the relevance of strategic studies for governments and businesses and how IISS data and analysis has benefited businesses across the globe. Now in its 61st year, the IISS is an international research institute that provides objective information on military, geopolitical and geo-economic developments that could lead to a conflict. The IISS has helped to shape the strategic agenda for governments, businesses, the media and experts around the world.
The IISS is well known for its premier defence and security summits, the Manama and Shangri-La Dialogues, where heads of state, government ministers and experts gather together to make policy statements about the region in front of other governments, regional experts and the media. The last Manama Dialogue in October 2018 attracted over 500 delegates from 49 countries comprising senior ministers, military and intelligence chiefs, top diplomats, CEOs, opinion-formers, analysts and leading journalists. The next Manama Dialogue will be held from 22 to 24 November this year.
Sir Tom commented: “What makes our Dialogues extremely useful is that apart from the senior delegates from various governments, there is a significant board level representation from multinational businesses, who greatly value the opportunity to listen and contribute to the debate and to conduct meeting of their own on the sidelines of the summit.”
The IISS is a registered charity based in London with three regional offices. The Washington office covers the Americas, Singapore office covers the Indo-Pacific and Manama office covers the Middle East.
“Geo-political risk is regularly cited by businesses as the risk most difficult to manage. Companies need to do their geopolitical due-diligence and adapt their corporate diplomacy to address risk and seize opportunity. In a world where everyone and everything is connected, IISS research can help shine a light into the fog of strategic competition to help regional business leaders and decision-makers navigate a congested, cluttered and contested world,” said Sir Tom.
The meeting concluded with a Q&A session where Sir Tom answered questions from audience about the work of IISS and regional security.