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OIC/Economy: OIC members urged to prepare for financial crisis

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Jakarta: Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono called on Islamic countries to ready themselves for further threats from the financial crisis currently hitting Europe, as it could have a negative impact on all Muslim countries.


Yudhoyono emphasized that global economic conditions would worsen before they gradually improved.


“There will likely be a double recession. Also, remember the global population, which reached 7 billion last year, and which will rise to 9 billion people sharing this planet by 2045,” he said at his opening speech at the Seventh Conference of the Parliamentary Union of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (PUIC) in Palembang, South Sumatra, on Monday.


Yudhoyono emphasized that the world would need more food and energy resources, and governments and communities would be forced to compete stiffly during the global economic crisis.


He maintained the government would face bigger challenges to heed people’s aspirations and that public participation in governance should be encouraged.


“With the emergence of technology and globalization, people express their demands for higher standards of living and want a larger piece of the economic pie,” he said.


Yudhoyono hoped the conference would yield results that would not only contribute to respective member countries, but also to progress within the Islamic world.


“Many people in the Muslim world are aware that freedom of expression, participation in governance and social services are important,” he added.


Over 300 delegates from 40 countries attended the conference, which began on Jan. 24 and ends today.


Indonesian House of Representatives’ Speaker Marzuki Alie, who is also the 2012-2013 chairman of the PUIC Conference, said in his report that the meeting was expected to produce recommendations to boost progress in Islamic countries.


Yudhoyono said Indonesia must intensify cooperation and integration with other Islamic economies, as this was part of the challenge that PUIC-OKI directly addressed through coordinated and legislated policies.


“We have to push for reform in the decision-making of international economic and financial processes and be able to enhance cash flow for economic growth.”


Yudhoyono also hoped that Islamic values could be used to solve a number of problems.


“We must project Islamic teachings in their best forms. But this message will only be effective if we as Muslims implement Islamic values, given that it was the most advanced civilization in the 13th century. It means, we must establish cooperation and build togetherness. Our capabilities must be able to respond within a culture of peace and tolerance.”


He emphasized the importance of empowering people as many Muslim-majority countries are categorized as impoverished. By applying Islamic values to address problems, he hoped alternative solutions could be achieved.


“Indonesia is trying to use Islamic values and democracy to address the problems facing us,” he said.


(Courtesy: IINA.me)
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