Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, the UAE Minister for Foreign Trade, on Wednesday paid tribute to women across the Arab world as she officially unveiled CEO Middle East’s 100 Most Powerful Arab Women 2012 list. In a gala event held at Dubai’s Emirates Towers, Sheikha Lubna highlighted the achievements of women in the region across a number of different fields, including business, art, science and sport. Sheikha Lubna, who topped the power list, said it represented how women in the Arab world were successfully overcoming social barriers. “The list shows that it isn’t just business where women are succeeding today. It is in science, in medicine, in the arts, in sports, in culture, in technology, in media. In fact, in so many different fields, Arab women have battled against the barriers the face, and risen to positions of great prominence,” Sheikha Lubna said in a speech on Wednesday.
“It is no longer strange to have an Arab women as the CEO of a big company. It is not unusual for Arab women to be heading large teams of people, both men and women, and to be responsible for hundreds of millions of dollars of expenditure,” Sheikha Lubna added. The UAE’s minister for trade specifically pointed out the efforts of Arab women in the fields of culture and society, 43 of which were included on the list, and highlighted the role of 16 UAE nationals included. Sheikha Lubna also thanked the region’s leaders for their role in creating an environment where women are able to thrive. “Thanks to the wisdom of our leaders, they have provided the encouragement and the environment for women to succeed in. I know that I could not have reached the position I am in today without their support, and I would like to thank them for that,” she said.