His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, met with His Excellency James Cleverly, Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Commonwealth Affairs and Development of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, during the first strategic dialogue meeting between the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom, which kicked off yesterday (Monday) in London.
The UAE delegation, headed by His Highness, included His Excellency Dr. Anwar bin Muhammad Gargash, Diplomatic Advisor to His Highness the President of the State, His Excellency Noura Al Kaabi, Minister of State, His Excellency Sultan Al Shamsi, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation for International Development Affairs, and His Excellency Saeed Al Hajri, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation for Economic Affairs. Al-Tijaria, His Excellency Omran Sharaf, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation for Advanced Science and Technology Affairs, His Excellency Dr. Maha Barakat, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation for Health Affairs, His Excellency Majid Al-Suwaidi, Director-General and Special Representative of the UAE Presidency to the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change 28COP, and His Excellency Mansour Belhoul, UAE Ambassador to the United Kingdom, and His Excellency Faisal Issa Lutfi, Assistant Undersecretary for Consular Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.
During the strategic dialogue, a joint statement was issued between the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom, which stated: “His Excellency James Cleverly, Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Commonwealth Affairs and Development of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, hosted His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, during the opening of the first dialogue Strategic between the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom in London on May 15, 2023.
The strategic dialogue comes within the framework of the visit of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the State, “may God protect him”, to the United Kingdom in September 2021, during which the leaders of the two countries agreed to establish a “Partnership for the Future”, which established a new phase of ambitious partnership and a road map. For cooperation between the UAE and the United Kingdom, during which it was agreed that the two foreign ministers would chair the strategic dialogue to advance progress within the framework of the partnership for the future.
The strategic dialogue emphasized the strength of bilateral relations, and the two sides noted the depth of cooperation between the two countries, their common history, and the constant commitment to consolidating and enhancing relations between the two peoples.. In this regard, the two ministers renewed their commitment to the existing relations between the two countries, and welcomed the growing partnership across many sectors and the first strategic dialogue as An important platform in bilateral relations.
During the strategic dialogue, the two ministers agreed on the need for cooperation to face global challenges, and they also discussed the importance of having a comprehensive and ambitious agenda for the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change at its twenty-eighth session (COP28), which will be held in Dubai Expo City in November 2023.
The two ministers reaffirmed the importance of enhancing aspirations and implementing effective measures in this critical decade, and the need to provide a strong and unified response to the global assessment process to fill the gaps that prevent the realization of aspirations, taking into account mitigation, adaptation, loss and damage, and climate finance in order to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, and contain Global warming not to exceed 1.5 degrees Celsius, and to reverse the losses in forest and biodiversity loss. They stressed the need to accelerate climate action and cooperate in long-term projects that promote cooperation in the field of clean energy, climate finance, adaptation, nature, and food systems, and agreed to strengthen these partnerships.
The two sides also praised the trade and investment relations, as well as the existing relations in the field of aviation between the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom. They pointed to the increasing prosperity of trade in goods and services between the two countries, which currently reached an all-time high of 21.6 billion pounds sterling until the end of the fourth quarter of 2022. They welcomed the success of the “sovereign investment partnership” signed in 2021 and noted the support of the United Arab Emirates. and the United Kingdom to expand and deepen trade and investment relations between the two countries in areas of mutual benefit.
The two sides praised the existing partnerships between the two countries in the fields of energy and clean energy, which complement and enhance the ambitious climate goals of the two countries by moving towards a low-carbon future.
The two sides expressed their readiness to hold the eighth session of the Joint Economic Committee between the UAE and the United Kingdom this year, and also welcomed the conclusion of the third round of free trade agreement negotiations between the United Kingdom and the Gulf Cooperation Council countries that concluded in March, indicating that they are looking forward to the fourth round, which will be hosted by UK later this year.
In this context, the two sides agreed to build on the existing distinguished trade and investment relations between the two countries, and at the same time continue bilateral discussions in the form of appendices or side agreements to the GCC Free Trade Agreement, to explore ways of agreeing on specific issues between the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.
The two sides renewed their full commitment to work to consolidate cooperation in the field of countering illegal financing, under the umbrella of the UAE-British partnership to combat illegal financial flows signed in September 2021.
The two foreign ministers discussed the importance of coordination in the United Nations Security Council, and praised the UAE’s leadership role in the Security Council, especially the recent decisions taken by the Council on Afghanistan.
The two ministers also held detailed talks on common priorities in the UN Security Council, including supporting the women, peace and security agenda, promoting tolerance and combating extremism, addressing the effects of climate change on international peace and security, as well as preventing conflicts and finding peaceful solutions, building and maintaining peace and confronting intolerance. Hate speech, discrimination and all forms of extremism.
The two ministers affirmed their commitment to strengthening the bilateral partnership between the UAE and the UK through close multilateral cooperation.
The two ministers also held detailed talks on regional security and stability and stressed the importance of dialogue and building bridges to achieve regional peace and prosperity, including in their discussions on Sudan, Syria and Yemen. They also agreed on the need to work together through the United Nations to support diplomatic initiatives and channels, aimed at ending The war in Ukraine, in line with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.. The two sides agreed to deepen cooperation across local and regional security issues.
Prior to the meeting of the two foreign ministers, His Excellency Dr. Anwar bin Mohammed Gargash, Diplomatic Adviser to His Highness the President of the State, met with Lord Tariq Ahmed, British Secretary of State for the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia, the United Nations and Commonwealth Affairs, to discuss the progress made in the partnership for the future.
His Excellency Gargash and Lord Ahmed praised the progress made in the existing relations between the two countries, and affirmed the ambition of the two countries and their leaderships to deepen and enhance bilateral cooperation.
The two sides discussed the importance of cooperation in the fields of energy and climate change mitigation, development, science and technology, security, and consular affairs. During the meeting, the two sides agreed on the importance of maintaining continuous communication to ensure further progress within the framework of the established partnership between the two countries.