About Us

The key activities in the region are public policy engagements, coordination of regional interest groups and member services.

To learn more about the GSMA in the Middle East and North Africa region, please contact MEA@gsma.com.

Middle East and North Africa Team

Jawad Jalal Abbassi

Head of MENA, GSMA

Jawad leads the GSMA MENA team that is responsible for GSMA work & activities in the MENA region, which spans 25 countries. He oversees the MENA advocacy activities and GSMA programs such as future networks and technology programs. Jawad’s team engages with GSMA members, including mobile operators, in the deployment strategies of mobile services such as 5G networks, the internet of things, digital identity and AI.

Jawad’s team also works with a team of mobile experts from the GSMA including its HQ in London and other locations around the world. The work includes collaborating with stakeholders in MENA and advocacy work to ensure sustainable investments in mobile broadband networks. Activities include promoting the mobile industry’s positive contributions to regional and national economic development at the highest levels, influencing the region’s major opinion leaders.

Jawad’s career experience in ICT and media spans 28 years. Before joining the GSMA as head of MENA in Oct 2015, Jawad managed the Arab Advisors Group, which he had founded in 2001; he sold 55% of the company to the Arab Jordan Investment Bank in 2005. Prior to that, Jawad’s career experience included working as a senior telecommunications and technology consultant with the Yankee Group in Boston, USA.  Between 1998 and 2000, Mr. Abbassi was a senior analyst with the communications research arm of the Economist Intelligence Unit in Boston.

Jawad is also a frequent guest speaker at conferences and seminars related to technology, communications and media in the Arab world.

He has received his BSc in engineering from the American University in Cairo, Egypt in 1993 and received a scholarship for an MSc in information systems from the London School of Economics in 1998. He also completed executive education courses in finance for senior executives from Harvard Business School in July 2010 and comparative tax policy in August 2018 from Harvard Kennedy School

Wangari Karuoya

Advocacy Marketing Manager, MENA & SSA , GSMA

Wangari Karuoya is the Advocacy Marketing Manager, Africa and Middle East and is based in Nairobi. Wangari manages local implementation of the annual marketing and communications plan, region-specific marketing content and regional and in-country campaigns to increase awareness and action within target audience groups. She works very closely with colleagues and programmes focused across both regions. Prior to joining the GSMA she worked with Save the Children International, a Non- Governmental Organization that deals with issues of health, education and child protection as the Campaign and Communication Officer.

Wangari holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from the United States International University and is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Development Communication at the same institution.