Seminar & Events

International Symposium

Unstable Middle East and the Way to Reconstruction and Rebirth

The Middle East is in the midst of political and economic turmoil and people have been suffering a lot. The Arab spring in the Middle East brought about political upheaval and violent conflicts. Conflicts have not yet ceased in countries such as Syria, Iraq, Libya, and Yemen. Even in the Gulf region, where political situation was relatively stable, rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran got worse. This rivalry caused political repercussions over Syria, Iraq, and Yemen. Four Arab countries including Saudi Arabia came to break off diplomatic relations with Qatar. At the same time, unfavorable economic environment caused by the low oil price after 2014 fuels the worsening political situation.

Since the beginning of this year, the power of "Islamic State" substantially weakens in Iraq and Syria, which means rising above the quagmire of the worst unrest. It can be said that the Middle East started to change to new politics, new regional order, and new economic regimes. Can the Middle East embark on a new stable era? In this symposium, we examine the present situations in the Middle East and discuss the possibility of reconstruction/rebirth of this area in the near future. In this context, cooperation extended by the international society including Japan will be considered. The stirrings of change toward stability is still feeble. To support the change, it is important for the international society to back up the movement.


December 19, 2017 (Tuesday) 13:30-17:00 (Registration opens at 13:00)


United Nations University U Thant International Conference Hall
5-53-70 Jungumae Shibuya-ku, Tokyo


13:30-13:40 Opening remarks
13:40-14:15 Keynote Speech1:
"Partnering for Peace in the Middle East-The Security-Development Nexus"
Hafez Ghanem
Vice President, Middle East and North Africa, World Bank Group
14:15-14:50 Keynote Speech2:
"Insecure Gulf and the Way to Reconciliation and Stability"
Steven Wright
Associate Dean and Associate Professor, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU), Qatar
14:50-15:10 Coffee Break
15:10-15:40 Keynote Speech3:
"Present Situation and the Prospect of Future Stability in the Middle East"
Yasunori Kawakami
Journalist, ex-Director of Middle Eastern and African General Bureau, Asahi Shimbun
15:40-15:55 Speech1:
"Regional Cooperation and the Prospect for Stability in the Middle East"
Sadashi Fukuda
Chief Senior Researcher, IDE-JETRO
15:55-16:10 Speech2:
"The Three Decisive Forces in the Process of State Reformation in the Middle East"
Eiji Nagasawa
Professor, Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia, University of Tokyo
Panel Session
16:10-16:55 Panel Discussion
Hiroshi Sato
Chief Senior Researcher, IDE-JETRO
Hafez Ghanem, Steven Wright, Yasunori Kawakami, Sadashi Fukuda, Eiji Nagasawa
16:55-17:00 Closing Remarks
Yuri Sato
Executive Vice President, IDE-JETRO


Simultaneous interpretation in Japanese and English will be available


IDE-JETRO, The World bank, The Asahi Shimbun Company



Participation fee:

  • Non-members: 4,000yen
  • JETRO or IDE-JETRO members (Organization): Free for 2 participants per 1 account.
  • IDE-JETRO members (Individual):2,000yen
  • Student: 2,000yen

External Relations Division, Research Promotion Department, IDE-JETROETRO