Yekaterinburg, July 12, 2017: H.E. Engr. Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansoori, Minister of Economy, recently discussed prospects for future economic and industrial cooperation with the Russian Federation under the framework of the latter's bilateral relations with the UAE, other GCC countries, and the entire region.
The Minister met with senior officials of the Russian Government while heading an economic and trade delegation from the UAE in a visit to the Russian Federation to participate in the 8th International Industrial Trade Fair (Innoprom) running from July 10 to 13, 2017 at the Russian city of Yekaterinburg.
The delegation included H.E. Abdullah Al Saleh, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade and Industry; H.E. Abdullah Sultan Alfan Alshamsi, Assistant Undersecretary for Industrial affairs; and other government and private sector representatives.
During the meeting, the two sides praised the current level of cooperation between the two countries, emphasizing the importance of further enhancing ties in several areas of common interest – including the transformative industries, petrochemicals and aluminum, advanced technologies, and the fields of innovation, scientific research, renewable energy, agriculture and food.
H.E. Al Mansoori underscored the importance of healthy economic and trade relations between the two friendly countries, pointing out that the current development in foreign trade indices reflects their mutual desire to develop effective cooperative mechanisms in all vital sectors.
He further mentioned that non-oil trade between the UAE and Russia has been reaching high levels, noting a record USD 2.1 billion in commercial exchange for 2016 which he said is likely to increase significantly in light of existing and upcoming mutual opportunities for the two countries.
Over the last two years, the UAE has welcomed more than 600,000 Russian visitors. The UAE's national carriers operate 56 weekly flights between the two countries.
The Minister reviewed priority areas under the UAE's economic agenda, specifically citing seven sectors identified by the National Innovation Strategy, namely energy, transport, technology, education, healthcare, water and space. He emphasized that the UAE is keen to benefit from Russia's world-leading experience in the fields of industry and scientific research and development.
H.E. Al Mansoori praised Innoprom as a distinguished international platform for learning about the latest industrial technologies in a number of vital disciplines and advanced Russian technology in the fields of transport and transformative industries.
The Minister also invited Russian businessmen and investors to expand their presence in the UAE market and benefit from available investment opportunities as well as incentives and advantages enjoyed by locally operating companies.
For his part, H.E. Denis Manturov, the Russian Minister of Industry and Trade, emphasized the distinguished economic relations between the UAE and Russia, pointing out his country's keenness to jointly work on developing more cooperative prospects and moving on to more advanced levels.
H.E. Manturov added that there are many areas of cooperation that offer promising opportunities for establishing partnerships and enhancing mutual investments between the two sides. He pointed out that the Russian side is keen to enhance the level of its agricultural and industrial exports to the UAE and the region in general. He emphasized the importance of working on enhancing linkages between the business communities of both sides to review major investment opportunities.
Gulf-Russian meeting to enhance prospects for future cooperation
H.E. Al Mansoori joined H.E. Zayed Bin Rashid Alzayani, Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism of the Kingdom of Bahrain; H.E. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani, Secretary General of the Gulf Cooperation Council; and H.E. Abdul Karim Taqi Abdul Karim, General Manager of the Public Authority for Industry in Kuwait during a meeting with Russian representatives on the sidelines of their participation in Innoprom. The gathering included senior officials of the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade headed by Undersecretary Sergey Tsip and representatives of the economic sectors of the Russian Federation.
The joint Gulf-Russian meeting tackled areas of economic and trade cooperation and means of investing in the potential of the two sides in establishing mutually beneficial industrial and development projects that can further enhance existing economic partnerships.
The two sides discussed investment opportunities available in several vital industries, most notably the aluminum trade where GCC countries have made great progress at the regional and international levels. The meeting also considered the Russian proposal on the establishment of an international organization for regulating the global aluminum industry, with the Kingdom of Bahrain expressing its willingness to host the headquarters of the proposed organization.
The Russian side emphasized its interest in boosting industrial exports to the region and further expanding and diversifying trade, pointing out that Russia is in the process of establishing a free industrial zone in Egypt. The Ministers of the GCC expressed their appreciation for Russia's efforts to support the development plans of Egypt as well as their region.
During the meeting, H.E. Al Mansoori underlined the importance of developing various aspects of Gulf-Russian cooperation in order to mutually benefit from the outcomes and advance the region's development objectives.
H.E. also expressed the UAE's support for the proposed establishment of an organization for regulating the global aluminum industry with the Kingdom of Bahrain as its recommended base. He pointed out the importance of encouraging cooperation in the aluminum and petrochemical industries as the Gulf and Russia enjoy many promising opportunities in these fields.
The Minister further stated that the UAE is willing to organize a forum in Dubai between their Ministers of Trade and Industry and private sectors to discuss various economic concerns between the GCC and Russia. The offer was welcomed by the Russian side which recommended further coordination between the Russian Government and the Secretariat General of the Gulf Cooperation Council and Chambers of Commerce on the matter.
He also noted that the UAE was one of the first countries to support Egypt, emphasizing the necessity of working towards ensuring the success of all development efforts in Egypt, which he said will have a positive impact on the region.
The Russian side warmly welcomed the Gulf delegation and thanked them for accepting the invitation to participate in Innoprom. They commended the progress achieved in strengthening Gulf-Russian relations during the past few years.
The Russians added that the strategic dialogue between the Russian Federation and the GCC has been very successful and has had a clear impact on strengthening their relations and developing economic cooperation. They shared that their bilateral trade exceeded USD 2.5 billion and expressed their country's desire to expand economic cooperation with GCC countries.
They further expressed their country's appreciation for the GCC's support for the Russian proposal to establish an international organization for regulating the global aluminum industry, pointing out Russia's interest in boosting its industrial exports and expanding its trade with the region.