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World Islamic Economic Forum Showcases Cultural Spectacle

World Islamic Economic Forum Showcases Cultural

Spectacle At ‘Mocafest’ In London

A global culture festival, bringing together artists and audiences from the Muslim and non-Muslim world, will meet in London this October. The Marketplace of Creative Arts (MOCAfest) - hosted as part of the 9th World Islamic Economic Forum which will convene outside the Islamic world for the first time in its history - will meet in London for two days of performances, master-classes, networking sessions and collaborations from 30th-31st October at the Excel Centre, London.

Hosted by the UK and Malaysian governments and organised by the WIEF Foundation, MOCAfest has been supported by Soul City Arts, a Birmingham-based non-profit community organization delivering arts interventions around the globe, and Radical Middle Way, which aims to promote an understanding of Islam among young people. In addition, the culture and arts event is being supported by UK partners including London & Partners, the Mayor of London, and UKTI.  

Free and open to the public, and featuring 30 artists from a diverse range of genres, MOCAfest will explore the role that art and culture plays in driving economic growth and business collaboration between East and West. The festival will showcase some of the most exciting new talent from across the globe.

A visual arts and installation exhibition will be open each day of the festival, and a selection of panel discussions, workshops and insights will also be offered. Each event will focus on the theme of the festival - using the common language of business to build bridges between the Muslim and non-Musilm world, helping emerging artists develop skills to help them to launch their careers.

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The installation exhibition will showcase works from artists such as: Mohammed Ali, a street artist from the UK, famous for using his graffiti styles to convey messages of positive social change; Sukina Douglas, a poet and hip-hop artist based in London who has been described as a forerunner in the growing Muslim hip-hop scene; and Eckhart Ahmed Krausen, a photographer based in Copenhagen who specialises in the study and documentation of Islamic architecture across Europe.  

In addition, an independent film festival will screen an array of international films touching on a variety of topics aimed at highlighting underpinning themes of the 9th WIEF.

In addition to MOCAfest, this year, the pre-festival MOCAfellows will take place on the 26th-28th October. It aims to equip aspiring artists from across the world with the business skills they will need to launch a successful career in the creative industries. Workshops will cover issues such as creative business development, financial planning, and training in digital media. All of the artists attending applied for positions to the pre-festival and will have the opportunity to perform, present and exhibit their work at MOCAfest.

Chairman of the WIEF, the Hon Tun Musa Hitam, said: “As the WIEF showcases the very best that the Islamic world has to offer as a lucrative trade and investment hub, MOCAfest will highlight the creative individuals harboring their talents and increasingly becoming an economic force within the global marketplace. MOCAfest and MOCAfellows will build on the themes of the 9th WIEF and use the common language of business to help emerging artists develop skills that will inspire and help them to launch their careers .”

Executive Director & Head of The Young Leaders Network, Fazil Irwan Som, said “MOCAfest continues to open new doors to emerging artists who would otherwise not have the chance to showcase on an international stage. We have been to Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Astana, Bandung, Johor Bahru, and now London and we will continue to change people’s lives and celebrate good art wherever we go.”

More than 1,500 government leaders, captains of industries, academic scholars, regional experts, professionals and corporate managers from 100 countries will come together at the 9th World Islamic Economic Forum to boost trade partnerships between Islamic and European markets, and explore London’s future as a global hub for Islamic Finance.

Speakers from the world of politics will include the Prime Minister of Malaysia, the Honourable Dato' Sri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak, The Prime Minister of Pakistan, H.E. Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, the Governor of the Bank Negara Malaysia, Tan Sri Dato' Sri Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Baroness Warsi, Minister for Trade and Investment, Lord Green, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, Greg Clark, Minister of State for International Development, Alan Duncan, His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Bahrain Crown Prince and First Deputy Prime Minister, and HM Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, the Sultan of Brunei Darussalam.

Issues covered at the Forum will include harnessing the potential of women as critical growth drivers, harmonising global standards on Islamic Finance for high quality education in developing economies, and developing technological collaboration between Islamic and European economies. The event warmly welcomes participation from the Muslim and non-Muslim world.


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