Complex Made Simple

Risk Management receives increased focus in the UAE

MENA Strategies contributes to enhancing risk management practices in the UAE and the region

In collaboration with MENA Strategies, the RIMS Risk Forum Middle East, held on December 7 & 8 at the Conrad in Dubai attracted government officials, media representatives, and renowned risk managers from MENA based and international corporations; Associated Insurance Consultants, Control Risks, Du, Emirates Insurance Association, Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC), Emirates National Oil Company (ENOC), Emirates Transport, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation, MENA Strategies, Middle East Insurance Review, Nesma & Partners, New Dawn Risk Group, New York University, and Zain Group.

Major Mohamed Al Marri, Director General of the GDRFA, gave the keynote speech and highlighted that the nation should be established with the conviction that “risk avoidance is not an option, managing risk is”.

“In Arabic, the word risk literally translates to danger (خطر) and through our involvement in various trainings and educational events in the MENA region, we are working on making sure that it is not understood as such. This can be achieved by understanding and controlling potential risks facing an organization and integrating them into its corporate strategy” said Melissa Aoun, Managing Director at MENA Strategies.

The Risk Forum, supported by the Ministry of Tourism and the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai, held interactive panel discussions chaired by Melissa Aoun, which covered an update on the MENA insurance market and a session on Energy risk on the first day. Abdulla Al Khatib, Finance Controller at ENOC, identifies political instability, cyber risk, as well as health and safety as the top risks facing oil companies. “Oil and Gas companies need to integrate Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) programs to better manage risks”, adds Bader Al Shumaimri, Manager of Risk Management at Kuwait Petroleum Corporation.

On the second day of the forum, panel discussions tackled connecting risk to corporate strategy, showing the value of a transition to Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) and cyber risk, chaired by Melissa Aoun. Samer Omar, Director of Security Risk Management Operations at du, highlighted that the 2015 average per capita cost per data breach in the UAE and KSA is around $122, with an average number of breached records per incident of 29,199, thus accumulating to an estimated $3.8 Million total cost (indirect and direct) of data breach in the UAE and KSA.

“The UAE is ahead of other countries in the GCC area in terms of risk management understanding, and after getting encouraging feedback from attendees and speakers, MENA Strategies will continue to cooperate with key regional and international corporations in order to initiate further events that focus on risk management” remarked Melissa Aoun.