UAE, Portugal advancing cooperation

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(Abu Dhabi) – The UAE and Portugal have signed two memoranda of understanding, MoUs, on quality assurance and food security during their third meeting of the Joint Committee in Abu Dhabi, where both sides also explored means of boosting cooperation in various sectors.

The meeting was co-chaired by Mousa Abdul Wahid Al Khaja, UAE Ambassador to Portugal, and Fernanda Ferreira Dias, Director-General at Directorate General for Economic Activities at the Portuguese Ministry of Economy.

Al Khaja welcomed the Portuguese delegation emphasising the UAE’s keenness to promote and develop relations with Portugal reflecting the aspirations of the two friendly leadership and peoples and serving their common interest.

He stressed that the UAE-Portugal ties are strong and have deep historical roots. He also pointed out to the role of the two countries in managing trade routes through ancient, middle and modern times, which gives a special character to their relations and constitutes a major incentive to develop cooperation in all fields, including political, economic, and cultural.

The UAE Ambassador highlighted the need to strengthen cooperation as the two sides have great opportunities and experiences in the renewable energy, agriculture, industry, tourism, health care, education, and food security sectors.

He stressed the importance of exerting more efforts and organising more meetings between the trade and investment missions of both sides, thus contributing to the acceleration of investment flows between the UAE and Portugal to new levels.

Al Khaja stated that the low share of Portugal’s trade with the Asian markets in general and the Arab markets, in particular, underscores the UAE’s role as an ideal starting point for Portuguese investments aimed at entering the region’s markets.

The UAE, he said, is characterised by its geographical proximity to these markets, its world-class infrastructure, its top-rated investment climate, and its advanced ranking in various international indices and reports on competitiveness, business environment, and investment.

Al Khaja expressed his appreciation to the government of Portugal for confirming their participation in Expo 2020 Dubai. He noted that more than 190 countries have confirmed their participation in the exhibition, which represent a great opportunity for the private sector and the Portuguese businessmen to connect and benefit from the investment and commercial opportunities available during the exhibition.

For her part, Dias reiterated her country’s eagerness to develop and strengthen ties with the UAE, which, she said, enjoys a prestigious regional and international stature.

The first MoU was signed between the Emirates Authority for Standardisation and Metrology and the Portuguese Institute of Quality, by Al Khaja and Antonio Mira dos Santos, Chairman of the Portuguese Institute of Quality.

The second MoU was signed between the UAE’s Ministry of Climate Change and Environment and the Portuguese Ministry of Economy to cooperate in the field of food safety, by Al Khaja and Pedro Gaspar, General Inspector of Portuguese Authority for Food and Economical Safety at the Ministry of Economy.

The UAE delegation included officials and representatives from various federal and local government agencies as well as semi-government companies.