UAE, France vow joint action on food security

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Leaders expressed deep concern regarding war in Ukraine as UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed has ended a historic visit to France, reports Asian Lite Newsdesk

UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan left Paris on Tuesday concluding a two-day state visit to France, which resulted in signing several agreements, notably on energy and food security.

In a joint statement, Sheikh Mohamed and French President Emmanuel Macron have commended the depth and breadth of the strategic partnership between the two countries.

They also emphasised a joint commitment to expand their collaboration across all fields, working closely together to tackle global and regional challenges.

The UAE has emphasised its support for global action on food security, and to work with France to find ways to mitigate ongoing pressure on global supply chains.

The UAE also announced its support to the Food and Agriculture Resilience Mission (FARM) initiative, specifically on open, transparent, and resilient food trade, as well as the provision of timely and accurate information to support the Agriculture Market Information System (AMIS).

Meanwhile, both leaders also agreed to establish a France-UAE Comprehensive Strategic Energy Partnership, representing a major step in fostering energy security and affordability. They also welcomed the agreement between TotalEnergies and ADNOC on fuel provision, with the aim of increasing the security of fuel supply in France.

Ukraine crisis

Both leaders expressed deep concern regarding war in Ukraine, its terrible impact on civilians, the humanitarian situation, and its effects on commodity markets worldwide.

They underscored the urgent need to intensify diplomatic efforts to reach a solution to the conflict, and His Highness commended President Macron’s continuing efforts in that regard.

Investment, and Industry

Building on the significant investment partnership agreed in December 2021, the two leaders share an ambition to further expand the vibrant economic partnership between the two countries. They expressed interest in identifying and facilitating areas of cooperation, where interests and capabilities converge.

The two sides praised the recently launched UAE-France Business Council, with a view to further increase bilateral business opportunities for the benefit of both nations. The two sides noted that the Council will serve as a tangible outlet to expand the already constructive cooperation that exists between the two countries’ business communities, and underlined their shared desire to convene the inaugural meeting of this grouping in the near future.

Climate Action

Both leaders noted that climate action represents an area of critical mutual concern, emphasised common and ambitious goals in this important field.

President Macron congratulated the UAE for the future hosting of COP28 in 2023, and offered France’s full support, including through its expertise derived from COP21. Both sides signed an MoU on Climate Action, which will enable France and the UAE to enhance their cooperation.

The French side congratulated UAE on the successful operation of its nuclear energy programme. Both sides confirmed the important role of nuclear energy in their countries’ efforts to decarbonise their energy sectors and their resolve to continue the strong cooperation in this field, including by sharing technical expertise, the provision of technology and nuclear fuel, as well as in the area of R&D. The two sides also commended progress made in regard to the MoU on Decarbonised Hydrogen.

Additionally, concerning collaboration on marine research and development efforts, both parties agreed to work closely on the development of marine research collaborative programme to promote the sustainable blue economy.

Health sector

UAE and France have agreed on the importance of the health sector as a major domain for expansion in bilateral cooperation, reflecting a mutual priority area of French and Emirati development and expertise.

One example of successful collaboration is the Cardiovascular Diseases Prevention project between the Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre and Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris (AP-HP) (Iinternational). Based on the signing of the MoU in December 2020, the project was implemented by a team of French experts, who helped achieve growth, sustainable development and global competitiveness, as well as exchange of information and know-how.

Both sides welcomed the signing of a MoU on Cooperation between the Institute Pasteur and the Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre, noting that such cooperation could produce mutually beneficial outcomes. Both sides also cited the potential of higher education cooperation that focused on developing healthcare expertise.

Education, Space

Both leaders recognised the importance of education, culture and science as embedded in the fabric of the bilateral relationship, underscoring the contributions of existing key projects, such as the Sorbonne Abu Dhabi, and the efforts to expand cooperation in higher education, such as with Ecole 42, EM Normandie Business School, and ESCP Business School.

Both sides looked forward to forthcoming projects, such as gaming school Rubika, and encouraged further endeavors involving French higher education institutions in the UAE, as well as the expansion of French language teaching in UAE schools.

Recognising that the space sector is a key driver for the advancement of science and technology, the UAE and France signed multiple agreements related to earth observation, climate change initiatives, and lunar exploration to strengthen and deepen collaboration in this critical sector.

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