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GCC GRC Day 2024: Navigating the Complexities of GRC in the Middle East

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The successful launch of GCC GRC DAY at Conrad Dubai has set a new standard in the field of governance, risk, and compliance within the Middle East, continuing the legacy of the SWISS GRC DAY by adapting it to the regional nuances of the GCC. The insights and strategies shared during the conference are invaluable for anyone involved in the complex world of GRC, ensuring preparedness and proactive management in the face of evolving challenges.

The inaugural GCC GRC Day held on May 22, 2024, at Conrad Dubai, marked a pivotal moment for Swiss GRC. This expansion is highlighted by the establishment of a new branch and operational office in Dubai Internet City, UAE, designed to cater specifically to the unique demands of these markets. Swiss GRC has committed significant resources to the region, including investing in a local entity and data center to ensure compliance with operational and regulatory requirements.

The event itself extended the Swiss organization’s renowned conference series, SWISS GRC DAY, previously celebrated in Europe, to a dynamic new audience. This carefully curated conference brought together top-tier professionals from across the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) to engage deeply with the core themes of governance, risk, and compliance (GRC).

Strategic Initiative and Expert Collaboration

Swiss GRC’s introduction of GCC GRC Day in Dubai underscores its commitment to the unique GRC challenges in the Middle East. In partnership with GEC Media Group, the event was designed to facilitate a sophisticated environment for dialogue and knowledge exchange, tailored specifically to the nuanced needs of regional professionals. This collaboration enabled the conference to offer region-specific insights that resonated with attendees, fostering strategic partnerships and enhancing the learning experience. By focusing on localized content, Swiss GRC not only addressed the direct challenges of the Middle Eastern GRC landscape but also reinforced its role as a key influencer in advancing regional GRC practices. Swiss GRC is dedicated to enhancing the expertise of GRC professionals in the Middle East, promoting a deeper understanding of complex compliance issues and encouraging the implementation of best practices across the region.

Keynote Addresses and Expert Panels

The GCC GRC Day 2024 kicked off with an insightful keynote address from Rajeev Dutt, General Manager MEA and APAC at Swiss GRC, who underscored the critical importance of integrated GRC frameworks in today’s increasingly digital and interconnected business environment. Dutt highlighted the essential need for advanced tools that offer comprehensive visibility into risks, thereby empowering organizations to adapt quickly to regulatory changes and maintain continuous operations amidst potential disruptions.

Rajeev Dutt, General Manager MEA & APAC, Swiss GRC at GCC GRC DAY 2024

Following Dutt’s keynote, Besfort Kuqi, Co-founder and CEO of Swiss GRC, took the stage to offer an overview of the GRC Toolbox. This segment highlighted Swiss GRC’s commitment to expanding its product offerings in response to the growing demands of its Middle East clientele. Kuqi outlined the introduction of additional modules to the GRC Toolbox, which now includes components ranging from risk management and audit to data protection and internal controls. This expansion has led to the Toolbox comprising 12 integrated modules that provide a robust framework for managing various aspects of governance, risk, and compliance. The enhancement of the GRC Toolbox is particularly tailored to meet the complex needs of both government entities and the private sector within the region. By incorporating these additional modules, Swiss GRC not only strengthens its presence in the MEA & APAC regions but also effectively positions itself to address and mitigate the unique challenges faced by its diverse client base. This strategic development underscores Swiss GRC’s dedication to delivering comprehensive, cutting-edge solutions that enhance the resilience and compliance capabilities of organizations operating in these dynamic markets.

Besfort Kuqi, Co-founder & CEO of Swiss GRC, at GCC GRC DAY 2024

The conference featured an expert panel that brought together leading voices in the field of governance, risk, and compliance. The panel included Evita Faustina Francis, Head of Business Resilience for the Middle East and India at Marsh, Srihari Upadhya, AGM of IS Risk and Compliance at Aster DM Healthcare, and Mohamad Gholoom, Governance and Risk Expert at Ministry of Health and Prevention UAE. This panel delved into several pressing issues facing the GRC community today.

The panelists discussed the impact of emerging technologies like AI and blockchain on GRC frameworks, highlighting both the challenges and opportunities these technologies present. They explored how these advancements could drive more efficient compliance processes and risk management strategies, but also how they necessitate updates to existing frameworks to accommodate new kinds of risks.

Panel Discussion at GCC GRC DAY 2024

Additionally, the importance of cross-functional collaboration was a major theme, with panelists agreeing that breaking down silos within organizations is crucial for effective risk management. They discussed strategies for fostering an organizational culture that promotes ongoing communication and cooperation across departments, which is essential for a holistic approach to GRC. Lastly, the panel addressed the evolving skills required for GRC leaders in this dynamic landscape. They pointed out the need for a combination of technical knowledge and soft skills, such as the ability to navigate complex organizational structures and influence change, which are vital for leading successful GRC initiatives in modern businesses. These discussions provided attendees with a rich tapestry of insights and actionable strategies, reinforcing the importance of staying ahead in the ever-evolving domain of governance, risk, and compliance.

Dynamic Participation and Tangible Outcomes

The GCC GRC Day was characterized by its dynamic interactions and the active participation of attendees who engaged in discussions on a variety of topics including cyber security, operational resilience, and strategic business planning. The presentations and panels not only provided insights into current trends and challenges but also offered practical solutions and strategies for navigating the complex GRC landscape.

The event excelled in providing networking opportunities, allowing attendees to forge new connections and strengthen existing ones. These interactions are vital for fostering collaboration and innovation in the field of GRC, with many participants commenting on the invaluable contacts they made during the event.

The GCC GRC Day 2024 set a new benchmark for GRC conferences in the region, effectively addressing the specific needs and challenges faced by Middle Eastern enterprises. The event underscored the growing importance of robust governance, risk management, and compliance strategies in an increasingly complex global market.

As we reflect on the successes and insights garnered during GCC GRC Day 2024, it is evident that such forums are vital for the continuous evolution and effectiveness of GRC practices in the global business arena.

Picture of Yahya Mohamed Mao

Yahya Mohamed Mao

Yahya Mohamed Mao is a certified GRC Professional (GRCP) and heads the Marketing & Communications department at Swiss GRC. He is a regular contributor to industry publications and provides insights and expertise on current trends and innovations in Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC), AI, Marketing and Branding.

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Dive into this comprehensive analysis to discover how emerging technologies, integrated GRC frameworks, and a renewed focus on cybersecurity and operational resilience are defining the future of GRC. Equip your organization with the knowledge to not only face the challenges of today but to leverage them into tomorrow’s opportunities.
The GCC GRC DAY 2024 brought together leading industry experts who engaged in rich discussions about the most pressing GRC challenges, sharing insights and strategies to effectively navigate the complex landscape of governance, risk and compliance (GRC).

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