The emergence of Nina Magazine as a national and international voice bears testament to the readiness of the Iraqi people to participate in this change of narrative. The world is ready to embrace an Iraq that may be battered and bruised, but has shown its willingness to build from the roots of an ancient heritage into the knowledge age.
Iraq has sent out green shoots of understanding, showing a tentative recognition of the role of women as a medium to transcend challenges of violence and bigotry; sharing instead the strength,energy and resilience of the Iraqi people with a global audience.
I travelled all the way to Vancouver because I believed there was a need to translate this game-changing dialogue into Arabic, whilst presenting the business opportunities Iraq offers. However, I believe the need is stronger even that that. It is clear to me that a common language is needed, one that is evidence based but can be accessed because it represents fundamental shared human values.
It may be the language of business drivers and profit but it is also one that links the private sector, government and civil society (us as individuals) – delivering economic growth by connecting us in a way we can all buy into and understand.
Lisa Wolverton, convener of the Next Billion, and one of Canada’s key business leaders, pointed out that the thriving global business hub Vancouver now represents is relatively new, even in the new world. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Iraq, as a cradle of civilisation, could become the trailblazer for a new world of inclusive prosperity.
If there ever was a time to stop ticking boxes and think outside the box, that time is now!
To see this feature in Arabic and English from next week, with images and further analysis, visit nina-iraq.com