His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah inaugurated Tuesday 29th April 2008 , the Fourth World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF), themed "Islamic Countries:( Partners in Global Development)
In his speech, His Highness the Amir said that the slogan of the forum reflected the serious efforts for strengthening cooperation between member states of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), and between them and the rest of the world .
He said changes in this global world were fast-paced and that required a revision of visions and tracks of action, whether among the Muslim states or with others according to clear endeavors so as to prepare our people and institutions for a more active role that was in line with developments of the third millennium.
His Highness the Amir said that the Muslim world today was going through a historic time, because it enjoyed economic capabilities, huge human and natural resources that required to be properly exploited in order to achieve sustainable development and to guarantee good living standards for our people.
He stressed the need to combat poverty, increase knowledge, and counter diseases, in order to build modern countries that employed moderation and rejected extremism and violence, and sought peace, security and stability around the world, based on just economic partnership among Muslim countries and between them and countries of the world .
This partnership, he said , was one of the aspired goals, and Kuwait has ambitious developmental programs to this effect .
HH the Amir said that there was a need to boost economic cooperation among Muslim countries so as to increase integration in order to effectively deal with challenges they faced today.
He said there was a drop in living conditions and lack in basic services, low human resource development, and no systemic methods for research and development, increasing investment, inferior infrastructure, and other requirements required to build competitiveness.
To counter these challenges, serious cooperation was needed between Muslim countries so that they may raise investment among them, removing customs obstacles, improving infrastructure, increasing the efficiency of transportation and communication, and building a private sector that was able to lead development in Muslim countries.
To boost competitiveness, attention needs to be accorded to education and its development, he said, describing education as the basis for advancement of the Muslim nation.
HH also called for encouraging gifted and honor role students .
His Highness the Amir said that development was based on the efforts of individuals, institutions and the society, which was the role he hoped would be achieved from this forum so as to deepen cooperation for a better future.
The Kuwaiti leader noted that there was a food crisis in the world and a hike in prices, and thus, he said Kuwait was proposing an initiative for the establishment a fund for "good living in Muslim countries." He said this initiative was to provide basic foodstuff for those in need, to contribute to programs aimed at increasing agricultural products, and for cooperation in similar initiatives.
His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah announced the donation of USD 100 million for this initiative and called on countries and regional and international organizations to support it.
His Highness also said Kuwait supported the plan proposed by Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization Jack Diouf for countering the hike in food prices, wishing this plan success.
Such initiatives reflected solidarity and cooperation between Muslim states, the last of which was the Islamic Development Solidarity Fund which was launched by the Organization of the Islamic Conference in Makkah, and to which Kuwait pledged USD 300 million.
His Highness the Amir also congratulated the Afghan President Hamid Karzai on his safe escape from the recent attempt on his life, wishing him and his people stability and advancement.