(Reuters) – – The White House on Friday announced a “summit on entrepreneurship” to build economic ties with the Islamic world, part of President Barack Obama’s outreach to Muslims.
The White House said it has invited participants from more than 40 countries over five continents for the April 26-27 conference in Washington.
“The summit will highlight the role entrepreneurship can play in addressing common challenges while building partnerships that will lead to greater opportunity abroad and at home,” White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said.
Obama first spoke of the entrepreneurship conference in his signature June 4 speech in Cairo to the Islamic world.
In the closely watched address, Obama said the United States was seeking a “new beginning” with the Islamic world to rebuild relations that had sharply deteriorated over the past decade.
Obama promised at the time that he would convene a “presidential summit on entrepreneurship” by the end of 2009.
He said that the meeting would “identify how we can deepen ties between business leaders, foundations and social entrepreneurs in the United States and Muslim communities around the world.”