Amplifying the private sector through innovation

"Bringing together the right partners, resources and holistic processes will provide the right platform for greater economic outcomes" - Ahmed Awil

June 30, 2022

Ahmed Awil is project manager for the development of the UNDP Innovation Hubs in Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

UNDP Papua New Guinea

"Papua New Guinea has unrivalled economic potential that with the right policies and initiatives could be realized to the benefit of the nation."

Mr. Ahmed Awil is a Private Sector Development Specialist with the United Nations Development Programme in Papua New Guinea. He is responsible to drive and implement economic development initiatives - focused on creating and empowering the private sector through targeted innovation, financial inclusion, and entrepreneurship.

“Private sector development is key to the developmental needs of Papua New Guinea and is an essential partner to achieving better outcomes focused on employment, investments and having a sustainable economy,” he says.

Ahmed is currently a project manager for the development and construction of three innovation hubs in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, in Papua New Guinea.

“The project is focused on driving increased entrepreneurship and providing a platform that enables women, entrepreneurs, youth, students, and others, to benefit from education and training programs in a digitally enabled innovation hub.”

Together with his wife and four children, Ahmed lived in Australia for the last 10 years, after moving there as a skilled migrant.

Originally from Somalia, he also lived and worked in Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates, after completing his post graduate studies. Ahmed earned a PhD in internationalization in outward investments of emerging economies, and how the changing globalization and liberalization has transformed global competitiveness.

“I worked in Malaysia and United Arab Emirates on development of economic zones - and in construction, with a focus on precast systems.”

Ahmed says he is proud of being involved in projects that have greatly worked to catalyse new investment and job creation initiatives in emerging economies, particularly the Iskandar Malaysia project.

“The Iskandar Malaysia project, where I was one of the earliest employees, delivered and rolled out major economic development initiatives like Educity (Asia’s first multi campus hub), Legoland and other commercial, residential and education projects.”

“The project has enabled a faster rate of job creation and investment than would have been possible without targeted investments. “

Now with UNDP in Port Moresby for over 6 months, Ahmed highlights the efforts in working towards achieving the sustainable development goals in Papua New Guinea.

“UNDP is the right partner for sustainability, acting as a transmitter of knowledge, experiences and insights from across 170 countries greatly strengths Papua New Guinea’s ability to better implement the SDG goals.”

"UNDP amplifies the importance of gender equality in the country, as a proud gender parity organization that takes particular interest in implementing initiatives that put gender at the heart of everything it does", he adds.

Ahmed is also a football fan who follows, and plays the sport, in his spare time.

“I am passionate about football, I play regularly in the over 30+ recreational league, and support Arsenal football club in the English premier league. We haven’t won the league since 2004, but I am sustained by our Invincibles team who went a whole season undefeated.”

“The project has enabled a faster rate of job creation and investment than would have been possible without targeted investments. “
Mr. Ahmed Awil