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  Middle East & Africa
UAE Economy Steaming Ahead with Confident Steps Despite Global Financial Meltdown
UAE Ambassador to Korea Abdulla Al-Maainah

UAE Ambassador to Korea Abdulla Al-Maainah said that the UAE economy is stable and steaming ahead with confident steps despite the abrupt international financial crisis.

Pointing out that the UAE is still making economic gains in various sectors amid the recent prompt measures taken by the government under the leadership of H. H. President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai H. H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum to handle the global crisis, he maintained that the UAE economy is on its way to increase diversifying the structure of its economy and reducing its dependence on oil, in line with the development program and strategic plans.

According to the envoy, the UAE placed itself in a very advanced ranking in terms of non-oil sectors contribution to the structure of the national income.

He made the points while meeting with the Emirates News Agency correspondent in Seoul in answers to questions concerning negative aspects of the future course of the UAE economy in the face of global financial meltdown and about some of news reports that talked about business slowdown in the UAE. "The information provided in these reports are inaccurate and overly exaggerated," he maintained.

Beside its exports, the UAE also enjoys relatively high rates of re-exports, and situation of its economy still strong.

In the meantime, he said that a landmark nuclear deal signed recently between the UAE and the US, which is described as "a renaissance in diversifying energy needs in times to come."

The United Arab Emirates and the United States have inked a landmark nuclear deal, which will see transfer of nuclear fuel for peaceful uses, technology and know-how in return for commitments to follow all the essential safeguards as per international legislative standards.

"The deal, known as the 123 Agreement, is being seen as a "model' for the developing world, and is the first of its kind that Washington has entered into with any of the Middle Eastern countries.

UAE Foreign Minister H. H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan and former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice who signed the agreement in Washington, have rightly termed it as a renaissance in diversifying energy needs in times to come.

The unique aspect of the understanding is the confidence, which Washington has in UAE as an oasis of development and stability in the region. In addition, the UAE on its part has clinched the hard-fought nuclear option by demonstrating its commitment to abide with the terms and conditions of UN's nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The said cooperation on the use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes is expected to go a long way in fulfilling the future energy requirements of the emirates.

He mentioned that recent studies indicate that the increasing demand for electricity in the UAE is fast outstripping the growth in supply thus compelling the UAE to opt to the nuclear energy technology, to meet its continued and increasing need for electric power.

The UAE, by keeping an eye on the larger canvas of development and future needs, has also entered into a similar understanding with France, and is working on a long-term plan to diversify its energy needs from merely carbon-oriented means to solar and nuclear sources.

The ambassador views that the UAE, which is a regional success story in growth and development, believes that using nuclear power for peaceful purposes represents an environmentally promising and commercially competitive option that could make a significant contribution to the country's economy and future energy security.

In line with the international future requirements and need for clean and green energy, most recently the UAE signed a statute that establishes the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), said the envoy.

UAE Foreign Minister H. H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan inked the agreement during the founding conference in Bonn, Germany, January 26, 2009.

At the conference, the UAE also applied to host the headquarters of the newly born agency, in view of the fact that the Masdar city in the Abu Dhabi emirate, which relies entirely on solar energy and other renewable energy sources, enjoys all the necessary potentials to be home for the agency, he added.

The Masdar city have been developed as the first city worldwide with a zero-carbon and zero-waste ecology, operated completely with renewable energy. The Masdar city would be a model to follow for more cities around the world, with the endeavor to sustainability and intention to attract the biggest business deals, academicians, pioneers and advocates of this sector.

In addition, the UAE endeavor to host the headquarters of IRENA in the Abu Dhabi emirate, is based on the several advantages the country enjoys, including its distinguished geographical location, which qualifies it to host any international organization.

The UAE also has a world-class infrastructure, especially air transportation, communications and the internet. These lead many international organizations and regional offices of the UN and its other specialized agencies to establish their quarters in the UAE, in order to perform their duties easily, based on the Headquarters Agreement and the Convention on Privileges and Immunities signed with these agencies.
It is likely that the daily frequency at Masdar city exceeds 90,000 people. Masdar is committed to exploring less expensive technologies of renewable energy that can widely be utilized to provide many countries around the world with clean and safe energy.

In Abu Dhabi, the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology has been established as a first world-class institute offering cutting-edge research and education focusing entirely on renewable energy.

It aims at facilitating Abu Dhab's vision of establishing a scientific and research culture, driving technological advancement in renewable, alternative and sustainable energy, contributing to the economic diversification and making meaningful contribution towards sustainable human resource development.

The Institute is available for students from all over the world as a forum for technology and science transfer in the field of renewable energy.






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