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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 24 June 2018

UAE calls on governments of the world to unite on technological change 

Minister of State Al Jaber urges action to keep jobs amid tech revolution 

Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State and Adnoc chairman. Courtesy Adnoc
Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State and Adnoc chairman. Courtesy Adnoc

The UAE called on world governments to create partnerships nationally and globally with the aim of leveraging advancements in technology to foster growth and equip people with the skills of the future in the advent of the fourth industrial revolution.

"We live in a time of great challenges and enormous opportunities," said Sultan Al Jaber, the UAE Minister of State.

"Technology has compressed geographic distances, brought people closer, and enabled incredible progress. Yet the pace of innovation is now so fast, it is pushing our ability to adapt to the limit, causing massive disruptions to how we work, live and communicate. The period of rapid transformation has been called the 'Fourth Industrial Revolution'."

Mr Al Jaber was speaking in a seminar held on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York organised by the UN Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) in cooperation with the permanent missions of the UAE and the Russian Federation to the UN and the Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit. The seminar was attended by a number of ministers and top officials including Vasily Osmakov, the Russian deputy minister of industry and trade, and Li Yong, the director general of UNIDO.

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Abu Dhabi has been seeking to forge private sector industrial partnerships as it accelerates efforts to diversify its economy away from oil.

The UAE, the world’s fourth-largest oil exporter, has given more urgency in recent years to developing industry amid a steep drop in the price of hydrocarbons on world markets.

Sultan Al Mansouri, the Minister of Economy, said in March that UAE investments in industry reached Dh112 billion in 2016, representing 86 per cent of total spending in the sector.

Abu Dhabi, in partnership with UNIDO, held the world's first Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit in March that was attended by more than 3,000 people that included heads of state, government leaders and senior executives from over 2,000 global companies.

"The UAE has long demonstrated a deep commitment to fostering inclusive and sustainable industrial development at home and across the world," Mr Al Jaber said.

"We have diversified and advanced our manufacturing base so that it includes petrochemicals, plastics, metals, machinery and aerospace. In addition, we have invested in sustainable technologies, as well as our oil and gas sectors, making the UAE a global hub for all forms of energy, diversifying both the energy mix within the UAE and globally."