King Abdullah II on Economic Development in the Middle East at the World Economic Forum on the Middle East
May 18, 2008
These goals are more than a vision. After years of delay, progress is possible. The Arab Peace Initiative has provided the foundation for a settlement between Israelis and Palestinians - this year. And peace has global support....We need to ask ourselves, how much further ahead would we be today, if these last eight years had been years of peace and stability? If, all this time, a sovereign Palestine had been building and thriving? If extremists and external forces had not had this issue to manipulate? If global investors and customers had been able to approach our region with even greater business confidence? If the Middle East were, already, the united economic powerhouse it can and should be - a regional community, speeding growth, ending poverty, creating jobs, and securing the future, the future for which our young people are preparing so hard?...Let us not stand here in eight years, or even one year, thinking, 'if only.' We can begin a different future, right now.