x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Deep UAE-UK ties an alliance for the future, Abdullah says

UAE's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sheikh Abdullah, hails the historic links between the UAE and UK at end of the British prime minister’s visit.

UAE President Sheikh Khalifa receives British Prime Minister David Cameron during the UK premier's official visit to the Emirates.
UAE President Sheikh Khalifa receives British Prime Minister David Cameron during the UK premier's official visit to the Emirates.

DUBAI // The UAE and UK will further strengthen and develop joint partnerships in defence, trade, economy, education, investment and climate change.

“There is clearly a common sentiment that our deep historic ties can evolve to become an alliance for the future that continuously benefits both countries,” the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sheikh Abdullah, said yesterday at the end of the British prime minister David Cameron’s two-day visit.

“Ours can be a partnership based on the closest possible political, economic and defence collaboration.”

Mr Cameron said: “We will work together to deepen our defence ties by continuing the development of our joint plans for the security of the UAE and wider region; increasing our joint exercises and training; and by investing in the British military presence in the UAE.”

The prime minister said Britain aimed to grow UAE investment in UK infrastructure and strengthen British investment in the UAE in aerospace, ICT, service industries, communications, munitions and capability to broaden industrial and business partnerships.

“We collaborate on our mutual defence interests against external and domestic threats; we are political partners in international fora, where we cooperate to support the peaceful resolution of conflict. Our partnership as governments is built on our partnership as peoples,” he said.

The Conservative Party leader said he hoped for increased cooperation both on addressing challenges in the Middle East as well as on global challenges such as climate change.

A joint communiqué added that all these measures would be supported by working towards facilitating travel between the UAE and UK and to promote mutual understanding.

“We have today celebrated the long-standing and deep friendship between the UK and UAE and agreed an ambitious plan to develop our cooperation still further,” Mr Cameron said.

“Our partnership is built on respect for each other’s sovereignty.

"Both countries have evolved their systems of governance over time to reflect their respective traditions and aspirations for the future.

"We stand together to combat many of the threats to the security of the wider region. We are strongly committed to maintaining tolerant, open, outward-looking societies.”

Before concluding his visit, Mr Cameron met the President, Sheikh Khalifa, at Al Rawda Palace in Al Ain.

Sheikh Khalifa welcomed the prime minister and his delegation, and praised the distinguished cooperation and friendly relations between the UAE and the United Kingdom.

The two sides held talks on bilateral relations and the latest international developments.

Both leaders expressed their satisfaction with the volume of trade between their countries, which is on track to hit Dh70 billion by 2015.

During the meeting the two leaders pointed to the need to develop a common strategy that supports economic growth and diversifies the sources of technological development.

amustafa@thenational.ae