In a significant development highlighting the strong bilateral relationship between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the United Kingdom (UK), Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, UAE’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, met with James Cleverly, the UK’s Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Affairs. The inaugural UK-UAE Strategic Dialogue, held on Monday, showcased the depth of collaboration between the two nations, underscoring their shared history and commitment to enhancing connections and relations.
Strengthening Cooperation and Addressing Global Challenges
The discussions between Sheikh Abdullah and Cleverly centred on the necessity of cooperation in tackling global challenges. Both leaders emphasised the importance of an inclusive and ambitious agenda for the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference, which is scheduled to take place in Dubai later this year. Recognizing the urgency of addressing climate change, the UAE and the UK expressed their commitment to concerted action and highlighted the significance of collaboration among nations.
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Thriving Commercial and Investment Ties
The UK and the UAE celebrated their robust commercial and investment relations. The dialogue commended the growth in commerce in goods and services, which has reached a record high of £21.6 billion ($26.9 billion) for the four quarters ending in Q4 2022. The representatives acknowledged the immense potential for further enhancing trade and investment links in mutually beneficial areas. This positive trajectory is underpinned by the successful implementation of the Sovereign Investment Partnership, signed in 2021, which has bolstered economic ties between the two countries.
Energy Collaboration and Clean Energy Transition
Both sides highlighted their existing partnerships in the energy sector, emphasising their commitment to clean energy solutions. The UAE and the UK recognize the importance of transitioning towards sustainable energy sources to mitigate the impacts of climate change. Their collaboration in the field of clean energy underscores a shared commitment to achieving a greener future and fostering global energy security.
United Nations and Shared Priorities
The representatives underscored the significance of coordination at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and praised the UAE’s leadership in recent UNSC resolutions on Afghanistan. They engaged in comprehensive discussions on shared priorities at the UNSC, including advancing the Women, Peace, and Security agenda, promoting tolerance and countering extremism, addressing climate change’s impact on international peace and security, and promoting peaceful resolutions and conflict prevention. The dialogue also emphasised the joint commitment to combating intolerance, hate speech, discrimination, and all forms of extremism.
Regional Security and Peacebuilding
In their dialogue, Sheikh Abdullah and Cleverly focused on regional security and stability, emphasising the importance of dialogue and bridge-building to achieve peace. The discussions touched on the evolving situations in Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, acknowledging the need for concerted efforts to resolve conflicts and promote stability in these regions. The leaders also expressed their commitment to supporting diplomatic measures and channels to address the conflict in Ukraine, in line with the principles of the UN Charter.
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The inaugural UK-UAE Strategic Dialogue has further solidified the already strong bilateral relationship between the UAE and the UK. The discussions between Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed and James Cleverly reaffirmed their commitment to cooperation in addressing global challenges and promoting sustainable development. The strategic partnership between the two countries encompasses diverse areas such as trade and investment, energy collaboration, and regional security. By emphasising their shared priorities at the United Nations and their dedication to dialogue and peacebuilding, the UAE and the UK have demonstrated their determination to contribute to a more secure, prosperous, and sustainable world.