The UAE and China: A Vision for Future Relations
HH Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs
2015/12/14

Since its foundation, the United Arab Emirates has endeavoured to build a society that is inclusive, open, and moderate. The UAE has pursued a vision which respects diversity, empowers women, encourages technological advancement, and seeks to lead our nation to the cutting edge of human progress.

Whilst this vision has informed our national development approach, it is also one that goes far beyond the UAE's borders. It is a vision that is global in scope, underpinned by free trade, innovation, political moderation, and tolerance. It is one which actively seeks to find solutions that bring peoples, and cultures closer together, and one where all societies can obtain viable political and economic futures.

This is a vision, however, that cannot be carried out alone. It is one that, if it is to truly succeed, will require partners both great and small, Eastern and Western,to cooperate closely and engage continuously in the spirit of openness, respect, and equality.

As the world continues to seek answers to ever more complex questions, it is clear that the UAE and China aspire to a range of shared goals.

Just as our forebears cooperated in challenging environments along the ancient caravan routes of the Silk Roads and the stormy seas of the Indian Ocean, so too will we use the opportunity of the present to display leadership and forge new pathways ofprosperity and stability.

Over the next decade, we believe thatthe UAE-China relationship will reach a dynamic new epoch.

The UAE considers there to be significant scope to work in partnership with China to foster regional trade, further develop renewable energy technologies in a post-oil future, engage closely in space cooperation, and develop new forms of communication and information exchange. The UAE and China, as partners, will leverage our own societies'diversity to encourage tolerance and stability, and use our unique geographical locations and development models to ensure truly inclusive economic growth throughout the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.

It is in this context of shared success and common goals that the upcoming visit to China by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces,takes place.

The UAE wishes to use the opportunity of this visit to push the very boundaries of possibility in our relationship with China. We want to ensure that our bilateral ties continue to move in a strategic direction and are underpinned by the three critical pillars of economics, politics, and culture.

This is why over the coming days, the UAE wants to further develop, in cooperation with China, our economic ties not only in the bilateral context, but also through far-reaching regional initiatives such as the One Belt, One Road Strategy, and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, which we believewill reshape the very fabric of our wider region's economic future.

This visit will also provide an unprecedented opportunity to engage in robust and constructive political exchange. From countering extremism to overcoming regional political instability, we hope to develop shared strategic and diplomatic approaches to issues which require fresh thinking, open ideas, and revived global leadership.

Finally, as our shared political and economic interests continue to develop, so too will our inter-societal and political bonds. By engaging in further exchange and partnership in the fields of culture and education, we believe that positive contributions can be made to ensure that greater understanding and engagement takes place between our two nations wellinto the future.

We are at an undeniably important crossroads in our bilateral relations.

The UAE, as a vital political, economic, and cultural hub between East and West, and the gateway to the Middle East, considers its relations with China to be crucial in bringing about stability and development in our region and beyond.

We believe our political and economic futures will increasingly be interlinked and will continue to develop at an ever more rapid pace. By embracing our shared pasts, and looking to the future for new opportunities, the UAE and China can lay the platform of not only a mutually beneficial bilateral relationship, but alsoone that will ensure peace, security, and prosperity for the wider region.

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