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Tun Musa Hitam Receives International Honour as the World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) Foundation Chairman

BRUSSELS, April 9, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Tun Musa Hitam, the Chairman of the World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) Foundation and the former Deputy PM of Malaysia was awarded the prestigious Prix de la Fondation (Foundation's Award) at the Gala Dinner of The Crans Montana Forum on Africa, in Brussels last night.

Established in 1989, the Prix de la Fondation recognises men and women from all over the world who are committed to social responsibility. Previous winners include US President Barack Obama, HRH Sheika Sabeeka bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa, the Queen of Bahrain, the President and First Lady of Mozambique and the Prime Ministers of Turkey and Luxembourg.

Tun Musa, in his capacity as the Chairman of the World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) Foundation, received the award for his contribution in bringing together the rich and poor nations through business.

The WIEF is dedicated to building bridges through business between the Muslim and non-Muslim world. Tun Musa said "the fact that I am receiving this award after merely 6 years of the WIEF's existence is testimony to the Forum's great success."

The Crans Montana Forum applauded Tun Musa's achievements in awarding the prize, noting that: "We honour Tun Musa's exceptional ability as Chairman of the WIEF to connect worlds that people are traditionally inclined to reject."

"I value this award that recognises the value of hard work, democracy and empathy towards mankind as a whole" said Tun Musa.

"We live in a world where only 2% of the population controls 50% of the world's wealth, while 50% of the population owns barely 1% of that wealth. This is something we cannot solve by humanitarian aid. The only way to save impoverished communities is to give them the gift of life, the education and tools to start their own businesses and the god-given ability to think and create for the society that they live in" he emphasised.

Tun Musa is also the Chairman of the Board of Sime Darby, the world's largest producer of sustainable palm oil - and Chairman of Yayasan Sime Darby, which promotes the human quest for learning, knowledge, meaning, goodwill and understanding, particularly in countries in which Sime Darby has business interests.

The honour for Tun Musa comes as the 6th World Islamic Economic Forum returns to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia this year, following successful Forums held in Islamabad, Kuwait and Jakarta. It will be held at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre from 18 to 20 May 2010.

Bearing the theme 'Gearing for Economic Resurgence', the 6th WIEF will be officially opened by the Hon. Dato' Sri Najib Tun Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia and Patron of the WIEF Foundation. The Forum is expected to bring together some 2000 participants comprising world leaders and members of the global business community.

People keen to engage and contribute in dialogue with captains of industry and regional experts at the 6th World Islamic Economic Forum are invited to register at http://www.6thwief.org

About WIEF

The WIEF Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation based in Kuala Lumpur that aims to tackle problems in the Muslim world strictly from a business perspective, and to build bridges through business between the Muslim and non-Muslim world. The WIEF Foundation organises the annual World Islamic Economic Forum, a world-class business platform showcasing business opportunities in the Muslim world and also runs programmes that strengthen people partnership and knowledge exchange between Muslim and non-Muslim communities across the globe.

About Sime Darby

Sime Darby is one of the largest Malaysia-based multinationals and the world's largest palm oil originator. The company's history in plantations and palm oil processing dates back to 1821 and is characterised by success, leadership and responsibility towards nature, people and customers. In addition to plantations, the Sime Darby group has downstream refineries to manufacture vegetable oils and fats products for both food and non-food applications. Sime Darby is committed towards 'Developing Sustainable Futures' for all its stakeholders. A strong environmental advocate, Sime Darby subsidiaries have received various global awards including the United Nations' Global 500 Award for the company's "Zero Burning" policy. Sime Darby is also a founding member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), which in November 2005 formulated criteria for sustainable palm oil production.

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