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(January 1976)

Summary Of Discussions
The Seminar
"Oportunities For Cooperation Between France & The Arab World"
4-5 November 1975
Mahmoud Rushdi OAPEC adviser


Motivated by the success of the seminar jointly organized by the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries and the British Committee for Middle East Trade in London in May, 1974, contact was made with the Insitut Francais du Petrole later that year - - a move which reslted in another successful seminar being hedl in Paris in November 1975.

These joint activities are in line with OAPEC objectives which are particularly intended to produce a better understanding between the Arab oil-producers and the developed, friendly countries. The OAPEC guideline is that this objective may be attained through such activities as the seminars which allow a systematic dialogue to take place embracing a variety of points of view, as well as technical discussions, and that these meetings provide a solid base on which to build global solidarity as a major step forward to the attainment of world peace and prosperity.

Seminar Topics

Three major areas regarded by both sides as being the pivot for a full understanding of the development requirements of the OAPEC member countries were examined during the seminar in wich eight papers were presented by experts on both sides. They were :


"Training as the Keypoint to Industrialization" by M.Jean Chapelle, director of the Superior National School of Petroleum and Motors.

"Vocational Training And Industrial Development of the Hydrocarbon Industry" by Mr. Abdul Kader Chanderli, President General Manager of CAMEL.

"Overall Aspect and Specific Aspects of Vocational Training In the Framework of Franco-Arab Cooperation" by M.Michel Habib Deloncle, an ex-minister and president of the French-Arab Chamber of Commerce.

Cooperation In The Financial And Agricultural Sectors

"Abstracts To And Factors Favouring Cooperation - - In The Case of

The Financial And Agricultural Sectors" by M.Pierre Desprairies, chairman of the Board of Administration of the IFP. After his introductory speech on the theme of cooperation, M.Desprairies provided "Some Reflections On Inter-dependence".

"Joint Investment Opportunities" by Mr.Abdul Latif Al-Hamad, director-general of the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development.

"Conditions and Future of Franco-Arab Financial Cooperation" by M.Peirre Ledoux, president of the National Bank of Paris.

"Cooperation in the Development of Agricultural Resources" by Professor Kairi Al-Saghir of the College of Agriculture, University of Tripoli, Libya.
"Opportunities for Cooperation in Agriculture Between France and OAPEC Countries" by M.Bernard Auberger, director of production and contracts and foreign trade of the French Ministry of Agriculture.

Research And Transfer Of Technology

"The Transfer of Technology, the Level of Technical Competence and Dynamics of the Evolution of Techniques" by
M.Jean-Claude Balceanu, director-general of the Institut Francais du Petrol.
"Opportunities for Cooperation Between france and the Arab Countries in Scientifis Research and the Transfer of Technology" by H.E. Ibrahim Helmi Abdul Rahman, Minister of Planning, the Arab Republic of Egypt.
"The Facts and Problems of Industrial Cooperation" by M.Jacques Ribaudau-Dumas, president of the Union of Chemical Industries.

Throughout the discussions a sincere desire for effective cooperation was manifest and the exchanges were frank, candid and realstic in their approach to the issues involved. They reflected the benefits of international cooperation and of the inter-dependence of peoples, institutions and governments.
The seminar ended with the firm conviction held by both sides that interdependence in friendly cooperation was not only essential for the peace and progress of the world but to avoid repeating the grave errors of the past.

The participants emerged from the discussions convinced that there were bright hopes of beginning a progressive
era of inter-dependence - - built on mutual cooperation, thoughtful planning and a definite political commitment to attain this goal.

In the case of training, it was unanimously agreed that there was an organic connection between education and the attainment of technical skills and that the places in wich massive programmes of training in various skills should be inaugurated were the OAPEC countries themselves.

Thus, new projects were required in which technical skills could be exported in the general context of inter-changes between France and the Arab countries.

There was general agreement that, in the transfer of technology, whether in hydorcarbons, alternative sources of energy or agricultural development, the selection of the areas - - taking into consideration environment and national amenities - - was of primary importance.

Dr. Ali Attiga, OAPEC secretary-general, compared the process of the transfer of technology with that of plants where success depended on type of soil, the presence of water and the climatic conditions as well as on proper selection of the specles of plants themselves. In the case of the transfer of technology, however, where people and institutions were the main ingredients of the ecology and environment, there were obvious difficulties.

The French participants expressed entire satisaction with the results of the seminar and with the positive viewpoints expressed throughout. They had made a big impression on French thinking, particularly in the following fields :

petroleum and raw materials which could not achieve full usefulness without the sophisticated technologies that effectively adapted them to the needs of mankind.

inter-dependence of economies - - in the knowledge that a crisis on one side directly affected the development of the other

joint political responsibilities with regard to countries not possessing technologies or raw materials

The French side expressed the view that to attain a fair balance in the standards and styles of living, bearing in mind the different aspirations of each country, it was essential to exploit natural ressources by the application of the appropriate techniques, in many cases completely new techniques.
This called for considerable effort in the sphere of training and the deliberate promotion - - and, to a certain extent, reorientation - - of technical research.
All this could be achieved within the framework of a policy aimed at exchanging raw materials, products, technology and other forms of know-how.

On the usefulness of the seminar, the French side said that it has produced a better understanding of the needs, the possibilities, the structure of cooperative efforts and the decision-making mechanisms required to put into effect the aspirations of both sides.

The French participants expressed immediate readiness to cooperate with Arab petroleum institutions so as to obtain maximum results as well as to prepare the ground for innovation and developpment.

They affirmed their willingness to cooperate in developing techniques designed to accelerate progressive development in OAPEC countries and, concomitantly, to raise living standards, and emphasized that the goals could be achieved without the need to emerge through the technological stages that has been historically experienced in the West (the steam engine, the internal combustion engine, telecommunications, etc.).

While this viewpoint augurs well for progressive advancement, it must be stressed that these "vertical take-off" technologies must be able to meet the needs and aspirations and the environmental conditions existing in the Arab countries.

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