World Islamic Forum
Süleyman ŞENSOY
Süleyman ŞENSOY
TASAM Başkanı / Chairman
Release Date : 3/20/2015
World Islamic Forum I would like to thank especially Mr. Mamnoon Hussain, the State President of friend and ally country, Pakistan; the Chairman of the Senate and the Minister of Foreign Affairs; then the Senator Mushahid Hussain and Ms. Aiza and all other colleagues for their participation and contributions to the 6th Think Tanks Forum of the Islamic Countries.
 
We began the Forum process together with the Secretary General of OIC. We are grateful to OIC for their institutional interest and support till today. I underline the necessity for a stronger cooperation in the present stage. And I’m obliged to all sponsors who contribute to actualize the Forum; then of course, I’m obliged to you who give the most important contribution with your participation.
 
Especially the new world, which has been developed in the recent decade; has a very sophisticated competition. The parameters of integration, micro-nationality and unpredictability have been giving a shape to the world. We all see the first results of using micro-nationality as a competition factor in the Islamic countries. But other regions aren’t also exempted from this situation. There has been a threat in a certain rate for everybody. Also, there are highly important developments in the world in the level of integration. There have been lots of integration initiatives that take European Union as a model. But the most important one is the process of the trade and investment partnerships which have been separately developed in the last 3 years with Trans-Atlantic and Trans-Pacific. When the partnership process in Trans-Atlantic and Trans-Pacific is completed, a structure which has been controlling 73% of the world trade will be existed. That doesn’t include only an economic integration but also political and even military integration. And we have been observing that there are also new power candidates such as Russia and China against that approach.
 
There are approximately 100 countries which have been taken a shape as a competition field between the East and the West. Islamic countries have been inside of 100 countries. So, there is a historical challenge for everyone. I think that also the Islamic world should transform their own integration grounds in a stronger shape; and they should deepen that integration with political, economic and military arguments. For example; OIC, D8, Economic Cooperation Organization and the other present cooperation organizations…
 
Also “the change in the nature of state” has been another challenge. The nature of state has been changing and we do not discuss it. The roles of states and the positions taken in future by them will change. We will see all together that lots of present or still being constructed institutional structures will not be effective anymore just after a while. We should study much more together on what the change in the nature of state is. For example; the rate and instruments of hard power construction and soft power construction. As the Islamic world, we have been strongly investing to the hard power. We let our highly limited sources flow to that field. Perhaps, an important part of those won’t be efficient or will be senseless after a while. We do need to debate more also about what the soft power supposed to be.
 
In terms of security paralleled to the change in the nature of state, the concept of “expectation management” comes to the front. Countries who can not provide the expectation management begun to be scattered; moreover there are lots of countries in line. Please, do not evaluate my speech as much pessimistic. I’m just trying to share with you a picture which has been correct for me.  The Islamic world has very serious lacks in the point of benefiting from the institutional saving in the West. Also the Western world has a distrust derived from the double-standards against the Islamic world. So, I wish that the subjects, which will be discussed in the Forum, can contribute to the Islamic world.
 
While we begin this Forum initiative, our main objective was to contribute the raise of the critical thought capacity in the Islamic world. Think tanks are highly refined and important institutions for the critical thought construction. We do need thousands of strong institutional think tank in the Islamic world. And the present think tanks need to increase their capacity and also need stronger cooperation. We expect the increase of awareness of OIC; and also we know the studies about it. But there is always a classic trap: the wish to make those studies officially. The fact that thought activities maintained in an official procedure aren’t beneficial has been observed for a thousand times.
 
I hope that we will hold the seventh Forum in the next year. We are open to the hosting offers. But we are ready for Istanbul if there can’t be any appropriate offer. Also I have a subject to offer the Wise Persons Board of Think Tanks Platform of the Islamic Countries. I will offer the change of the name of Forum with “World Islamic Forum” after the next year. As for me, it will be more beneficial and it is necessary to include especially the countries, which are not only the Islamic countries membered of OIC, but also contain large Islamic societies such as India; and all Islamic societies in the world. In addition, such initiatives are highly important for both the Islamic world and regions and the world peace in the base of “power and justice”.
 
We are supposed to construct powers much more for providing the justice. I hope, we will also host H.E. Mamnoon Hussain, the State President of Pakistan in the evening. We will give the “Islamic World Istanbul Awards” that will be given the first time this year in the context of the Forum, together. Again, I would like to thank you all and offer my thanksgivings for each of you.
 
(Süleyman ŞENSOY The Chairman of TASAM | Opening Speech | 6th Think Tanks Forum of the Islamic Countries | 7th March 2014, Islamabad )
 
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