Greater collaboration between the UK and Abu Dhabi's Masdar Initiative was urged at a Buckingham Palace meeting.
Masdar has tea with the Queen
A group including British royalty, government officials, business leaders and leading academics was encouraged toward greater collaboration between the UK and Abu Dhabi's Masdar Initiative during a seminar held at Buckingham Palace yesterday. The message came from Dr Sultan al Jaber, the chief executive of Abu Dhabi's Masdar Initiative, who attended the event as part of a delegation from Masdar at the invitation of Britain's Prince Andrew.
The Masdar delegation included Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, the chairman of the Executive Affairs Authority of Abu Dhabi, who discussed Abu Dhabi's strategic economic growth and development plans. After the seminar, Mr Mubarak and Dr Jaber met with Queen Elizabeth and other members of the royal family in a private event in the palace garden. Dr Jaber also underscored the growing importance of developing and deploying renewable energy solutions.
"Today, governments and businesses worldwide are facing a common problem of strain on natural resources and environment," Dr Jaber told seminar attendees. "Energy security, climate change and sustainable development require engaging, aligning and collectively committing to investing in and shaping a better, and more secure future." He said the initiative wanted to play a major role in developing solutions for urgent environmental challenges.
"We are not simply a renewable energy initiative, our aspirations are far higher. We truly believe that we can make a difference," he said. Recognising the wealth of research and development potential in the UK, Dr Jaber also encouraged individuals and businesses to participate in the Zayed Future Energy Prize, which is accepting nominations and submissions from around the world. Prince Andrew said the project presented an "extraordinary opportunity" for British businesses to get involved. "It's a real pleasure to be able to facilitate this seminar at Buckingham Palace," he said. "I hope it'll provide a springboard from which the UK will be able to take advantage of the commercial and educational opportunities available."
Also speaking at the event were John Hutton, the secretary of state for business, enterprise and regulatory reform; Lord Browne, managing director of Riverstone Holdings; Lord Foster, the chairman of Foster and Partners; and Sir John Rose, the chief executive of Rolls-Royce. Later, Dr Jaber met with members of parliament in Westminster. The Masdar Initiative is a multibillion dollar investment in the development and commercialisation of technologies in renewable, alternative and sustainable energies as well as sustainable design. Driven by the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Adfec), Masdar is a wholly owned company of the Government through the Mubadala Development Company. In Januaryof this year, Abu Dhabi announced it would invest Dh55 billion (US$15bn) in Masdar, the largest single government investment of its kind.