“Learning to Live With Cheaper Oil: Policy Adjustment in Middle Eastern and Central Asian Oil Exporting Countries” on June 8, 2016


“Learning to Live With Cheaper Oil: Policy Adjustment in Middle Eastern and Central Asian Oil Exporting Countries,” a presentation and panel discussion hosted by The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the Middle East Institute (MEI).

Lower oil prices present new challenges to oil exporters. The latest IMF study, “Learning to Live With Cheaper Oil,” takes stock of the macroeconomic impact and policy responses in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, Caucasus, and Central Asia. While policymakers have started responding to the new reality and made substantial progress, structural reforms and strengthening the financial system are urgently needed to boost medium term outlook.

Date and Time
Wednesday, June 8, 2016
12:30-2:00 p.m.

Min Zhu
Deputy Managing Director, IMF

Martin Sommer
Deputy Chief of the Middle East and Central Asia Regional Studies Division, IMF

Roger Diwan
Vice President, IHS Financial Services

Aasim M. Husain
Deputy Director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department, IMF

Vali Nasr
Dean, Johns Hopkins SAIS

Jean-François Seznec
Scholar, MEI and Adjunct Professor, Johns Hopkins SAIS

Dr. John Lipsky
Senior Fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute, Johns Hopkins SAIS

Johns Hopkins SAIS 
Nitze Building, Kenney Herter Auditorium
1740 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036

Event Registration
The event is open to the public and media, with registration. Members of the working press may RSVP through the online registration form.

Media Contacts
Stacy A. Anderson
Communications Manager
Johns Hopkins SAIS
202.663.5620 (office)
202.853.7983 (mobile)

Randa Elnagar
Press Officer
International Monetary Fund

About the Speakers
Min Zhu assumed the position of Deputy Managing Director in July 2011. He previously served as Special Advisor to the Managing Director of the IMF from May 2010 to July 2011. Zhu, a native of China, was a Deputy Governor of the People’s Bank of China. He was responsible for international affairs, policy research, and credit information. Prior to his service at China’s central bank, he held various positions at the Bank of China where he served as Group Executive Vice President and was responsible for finance and treasury, risk management, internal control, legal and compliance, and strategy and research. Zhu also worked at the World Bank and taught economics at Johns Hopkins University and Fudan University. Zhu received a PhD and an MA in economics from Johns Hopkins University, an MPA from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University, and a BA in economics from Fudan University.

Martin Sommer is the Deputy Chief in the IMF’s Middle East and Central Asia Regional Studies Division, and the IMF mission chief for Qatar. His recent work includes analysis of the macroeconomic implications of lower oil prices, fiscal adjustment in oil exporting countries, and efficiency of public investment. Prior to joining the Middle East and Central Asia Department, Sommer was responsible for analyzing economic developments in the U.S. and Japan. He also wrote analytic chapters for the IMF's World Economic Outlook on a variety of global issues including commodity markets. Sommer, a native of the Czech Republic, graduated with a PhD in economics from Johns Hopkins University. He has worked at the IMF since 2002.

Roger Diwan is Vice President at IHS Financial Services and leads the team that provides integrated energy analysis to asset managers, private equity and hedge fund investors.  He focuses on the dynamics of the oil market and the oil industry and the interaction of supply and demand with geopolitics. Most recently, he has led IHS’ overall research on the “great deflation” in world oil and the future impacts it has on markets, companies and countries.  He has over 20 years of experience in advising oil and gas companies, as well as financial institutions on oil markets, geopolitics of oil, and assessment of the strategic shifts of the global oil and gas industry. Diwan has created customized advisory services to help financial sector clients understand the macro environment for commodities, key trends in all segments of the oil and gas industry, and company strategies and assets. Diwan joined IHS from PFC Energy, where he served as the partner responsible for financial service clients. He was Managing Director of the Markets and Countries department for PFC from 1998 to 2005, leading the company’s oil market analysis and country risk teams. Diwan holds a BA from the Sorbonne University and MAs from Johns Hopkins SAIS and the Institut d’Etudes Politiques of Paris.

Aasim M. Husain is Deputy Director in the Middle East and Central Asia Department (MCD) of the IMF, where he supervises the department’s regional work on Middle Eastern economies and the Gulf Cooperation Council. Prior to joining MCD in March 2015, Husain served in the European Department where he supervised work on several Central, Eastern, and Southeastern European countries. He also worked in the Strategy, Policy, and Review Department, where he led the Fund’s policy development work on capital flows and reviewed country work on large emerging market economies. Husain has served as IMF mission chief for Italy, Egypt, Jordan, and Kazakhstan, and headed the Fund’s work on commodity and energy issues. Husain, a native of Pakistan, received a BA in Economics and Mathematical Sciences from Rice University and a PhD in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania. He joined the IMF in 1990.

Vali Nasr is Dean of The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. He is a Middle East scholar, author, foreign policy adviser and a commentator on international relations. Dr. Nasr is a contributing writer at the New York Times and Fellow at the Brookings Institution. Before joining Johns Hopkins SAIS, Nasr taught international politics at Tufts University's Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. Nasr was Special Adviser to the President's Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan from 2009 to 2011. He has served as a Carnegie Scholar, a Senior Fellow at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, and an Adjunct Senior Fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. Nasr is a member of the U.S. Department of State's Foreign Affairs Policy Board, a director of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He has authored several books on foreign policy, Iraq, and the Arab Spring.  He earned a PhD in Political Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Jean-François Seznec is an Adjunct Professor at Johns Hopkins SAIS, lecturer at the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University, and scholar at The Middle East Institute. His research centers on the influence of the Arab-Persian Gulf political and social variables on the financial and oil markets in the region. He is focusing on the industrialization of the Gulf and, in particular, the growth of the petrochemical industry. He is senior advisor to PFC Energy in Washington, DC. He holds a MIA from Columbia University, a MA and PhD from Yale University. He has published and lectured extensively on Petrochemicals and energy-based industries in the Gulf and their importance in world trade. He is interviewed regularly on national TV, radio and newspapers, as well as by the foreign media.

John Lipsky is a Senior Fellow with the SAIS Foreign Policy Institute. He most recently was First Deputy Managing Director of the IMF. He previously held positions as vice chairman of JPMorgan Investment Bank, chief economist at JPMorgan Chase, chief economist and director of research at Chase Manhattan Bank, and chief economist and director of the European Economic and Market Analysis Group in London at Salomon Brothers. Early in his career, Lipsky spent 10 years at the IMF helping to manage the Fund's exchange rate surveillance procedure, analyzing developments in international capital markets, participating in negotiations with member countries, and serving as the Fund's resident representative in Chile. He currently is co-chair of the Aspen Institute's Program on the World Economy, Executive Director of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and a Board Director of the Center for Global Development. He also serves on the advisory board of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, and is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He earned his PhD in economics from Stanford University.

About Johns Hopkins SAIS
A division of Johns Hopkins University, the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) is a global institution that offers students an international perspective on today’s critical issues. For seven decades, students have distinguished themselves by pursuing academic excellence in international relations. The school was established in Washington, D.C. in 1943, and opened its campus in Bologna, Italy in 1955. It initiated one of the first Western university programs in the People’s Republic of China when it launched a campus in Nanjing in 1986.

The school’s mission is to provide an interdisciplinary professional education that prepares a diverse graduate student body for internationally related positions of responsibility; to foster research, scholarship and cross-cultural exchange; and to contribute knowledge, expertise and leadership to the global community.


For more information, visit sais-jhu.edu or @SAISHopkins



Thursday, June 2, 2016