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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

First UK-UAE Strategic Dialogue 2023: Joint Communiqué


His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the United Arab Emirates, was received by the Hon. James Cleverley MP, Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, United Arab Emirates, The first UK-UAE Strategic Dialogue in London on 15 May 2023.

The strategic dialogue builds on the visit of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, in September 2021, during which the leaders of the two countries agreed to a future-oriented partnership. The ambitious partnership sets the roadmap for cooperation between the UK and the UAE, through which it has been agreed that the Foreign Minister will co-chair a strategic dialogue to drive progress on the future partnership.

The Strategic Dialogue highlighted the strengths of the bilateral relationship, noting the breadth of cooperation, shared history, and enduring commitment to deepening ties and strengthening people-to-people ties. The ministers reaffirmed their commitment to the relationship between the two countries, welcomed the growing partnership in various fields, and welcomed the first strategic dialogue as an important moment in the bilateral relationship.

During the Strategic Dialogue, the two ministers agreed on the need to cooperate to address global challenges. Ministers discussed the importance of an inclusive and ambitious agenda for the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28), to be held in Dubai Expo City in November 2023. This critical decade calls for a strong and unified response to the global stocktaking to close the ambition gap in mitigation, adaptation, loss and damage, and climate finance to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, including the integration of 1.5C Stay on Reach; Halt and Reverse Global Forest and Biodiversity Loss. Together, they reaffirmed the need to accelerate climate action and collaborate on long-term projects that strengthen cooperation in clean energy, climate finance, adaptation, nature and food systems, and agreed to further develop these partnerships.

Both sides also praised the trade and investment links and aviation ties that exist between the UK and the UAE. They note the success of growing trade in goods and services between the two countries, now at a record high of £21.6bn over the four quarters to the end of the fourth quarter of 2022. They welcomed the success of the Sovereign Investment Partnership signed in 2021 and outlined the UK and UAE’s support for expanding and deepening their trade and investment relationship in areas of mutual interest.

Both sides commended the two countries’ existing partnerships in energy and clean energy, which complement and strengthen both countries’ ambitious climate goals and transition to a low-carbon future. The two sides expressed their readiness to hold the 8th meeting of the UAE-UK Joint Economic Committee (JEC) this year, while also welcoming the conclusion of the third round of negotiations on the UK-GCC Free Trade Agreement, which concluded in March, noting that they look forward to the fourth round, It will be hosted by the UK later this year.

In this context, the two sides agreed to continue to conduct simultaneous bilateral discussions in the form of GCC Free Trade Agreement annexes or additional agreements to explore ways to agree on specific UAE-UK issues on the basis of sound bilateral trade and investment relations. Both parties reaffirmed their full commitment to consolidate cooperation in the illicit financial sector under the framework of the UAE-UK Partnership on Combating Illicit Financial Flows signed in September 2021.

The foreign ministers discussed the importance of coordination in the UN Security Council and commended the UAE’s leadership in the recent UN Security Council resolution on Afghanistan. Ministers also held detailed talks in the UN Security Council on shared priorities including advancing the women, peace and security agenda, promoting tolerance and countering extremism, addressing the impact of climate change on international peace and security, and conflict prevention and peaceful solutions, Peacebuilding and peacekeeping, and addressing intolerance, hate speech, discrimination and all forms of extremism. The ministers committed to strengthening the UAE-UK bilateral partnership through strong multilateral cooperation.

Ministers also held detailed talks on regional security and stability and emphasized the importance of dialogue and building bridges for regional peace and prosperity, including in their discussions on Sudan, Syria and Yemen. They agreed on the need to work together, including through the United Nations, to support diplomatic initiatives and channels aimed at ending the war in Ukraine in accordance with the principles of the United Nations Charter. The two sides agreed to deepen cooperation on domestic and regional security issues.

Lord Tariq Ahmed, Minister of State for the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and the United Nations at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Commonwealth and Development, and His Excellency President Dr Anwar Gargash, the UAE’s diplomatic adviser, met to discuss the future ahead of the meeting of foreign ministers Progress made in the partnership.

While celebrating the progress made in the relationship between the two countries, both Lord Ahmed and His Excellency Dr Gargash underscored the ambition to deepen cooperation and expand bilateral cooperation. The two sides discussed the importance of cooperation between the two countries in energy and climate change mitigation, development, science and technology, security and consular affairs. In addition, they agreed on the importance of maintaining regular communication to ensure further progress under the partnership pillar.


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