Excerpts from the speech delivered by EU Ambassador to Yemen Gabriel Munuera Viñals during the launch of the first debate of #TalkAboutYemen campaign

(Source: EEAS)

In the past years, Yemen and Yemenis have seldom received the international attention they deserve. They have rarely had the chance of telling their own stories, of talking about their personal struggles, resilience or talents.

 

For far too long, Yemen has been a crisis we didn’t hear much about, a forgotten conflict. By launching this campaign, we want to try to address this imbalance. We want to talk about Yemen, and more importantly – listen to what Yemenis have to tell us.

 

Today’s discussion will focus on the entrepreneurship skills and initiatives of Yemenis. The speakers, from the diaspora and Yemen, will share their stories about the companies and projects they set up and how they were able to overcome challenges, create job opportunities and achieve success.

 

The private sector plays a vital role in turning the wheel of economic activity in Yemen. Enabling the private sector to become more resilient to conflict and early post-conflict, can manifest in communities becoming better able to deal with risks and shocks by increasing economic self-reliance.

 

Despite the ongoing conflict and humanitarian crisis, we believe in the potential of Yemen’s economy, based on the comparative advantage of its products, its traditions and commercial relations with neighbouring countries.

 

I am confident that this discussion could facilitate a constructive thinking on how to unlock Yemen’s economy and draw the path toward recovery.

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