A plan to enhance the strategic partnership between the UAE and Ukraine was the topic of discussion at the first UAE-Ukraine Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) held on Thursday (February 25) and co-chaired by H.E. Mariam Almheiri, Minister of State for Food and Water Security and His Excellency Andriy Yermak, Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine.

Bringing together government ministers and senior officials from both countries, the meeting outlined a roadmap to further bi-lateral engagement and pursue mutual interests. It follows President Zelensky’s historic first visit to the UAE on February 14, which resulted in the signing of 28 agreements in various sectors such as food security, artificial intelligence and tourism designed to boost trade and investment between the two nations.

Participating at the event from the UAE were H.E Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade (Ministry of Economy); H.E Omar Bin Sultan AL Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications (UAE Cabinet);  Major General Pilot Falah Qahtani, Undersecretary for Policy and Defense Communication (Ministry of Defence) and H.E Salem Ahmed AlKaabi, UAE Ambassador to Ukraine (Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation).

Participants from Ukraine included Ihor Zhovkva, Diplomatic Advisor to the President of Ukraine and Deputy Head of Office of the President of Ukraine; Mykhailo Fedorov, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation and Arsen Avakov, Minister of Internal Affairs Ministry of Internal Affairs.

“The first visit of President Zelensky to the UAE has resulted in our two nations forging even closer ties and building on what was an already strong relationship, opening up a world of new possibilities between us. This has formed the basis for forming the UAE-Ukraine Joint Cooperation Committee, which is creating agreed targets and timescales to take our strategic partnership to a new level,” said Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri, Minister of State for Food and Water Security.

“Enhancing the UAE’s relationship with Ukraine forms an important part of the UAE government’s foreign policy objectives, with our aim being to increase our non-oil bilateral trade from the existing USD 806 million in a robust and systematic approaches. Underpinning this direction will be new agreements between us, which will build on the Investment Protection and Promotion Agreement we signed in January 2003 and the Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreement, which we signed on February 14 during the visit of the President,” Her Excellency added.

The first UAE-Ukraine JCC meeting saw a roadmap to enhancing trading and investment outlined, with four areas of collaboration proposed, each one managed by a dedicated working group. The first area is Food and Agriculture, the second is Infrastructure and Heavy Industries, the third is Aviation, Space, IT and Telecommunications and the fourth, Military and Defence Technologies. Each of the four areas has been identified based on existing and proposed legislation and regulations, the nature and availability of resources, and UAE and Ukrainian needs.

Moving forward, the JCC will support the targeting of specific sectors by forming working groups- in many sectors including Food and Water, Infrastructure and Heavy Industries, Space, IT and Telecommunication and Military and Defence, Finance, Investment with the aim being to have established a detailed cooperation roadmap. A detailed action plan is expected to be developed in the next coming weeks.

“I am honoured to co-lead the UAE-Ukraine Joint Cooperation Committee and to collaborate with my ministerial colleagues, as well as my new colleagues from Ukraine, to enhance and improve the strategic partnership for our two nations. We will be working together in the coming months to create initiatives that will increase our trade volumes and improve our economic based on trade, investment and mutual interests,” added H.E. Mariam Almheiri.

Also taking part in the first UAE-Ukraine Joint Cooperation Committee from the UAE were Staff Maj. Gen Khalifa Hareb Al Khaili, Advisor for the Minister of Interior (Ministry of Interior); H.E Majed AlMesmar, Deputy Director General for the Telecom Sector (Telecommunications Regulatory Authority); H.E. Eng Saif Al Shara, Assistant Undersecretary for the Sustainable Communities Sector (Ministry of Climate Change and Environment); H.E Mohammed Almail, Assistant Undersecretary for the Federal Infrastructure Assets Sector (Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure); H.E Khalifa Al Qubaisi, Deputy Director (Abu Dhabi Development Fund); H.E Juma Mohammed Al Kait, Assistant Undersecretary Foreign Trade Affairs (Ministry of Economy); H.E Abdulla Sultan Al Nuaimi, Director of Economic Affairs Department (Ministry of Presidential Affairs; Ahmed Abdalla Burhaima, Deputy Director of Economic and Trade Affairs Department (Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation); Khadija Hussain, Executive Director of the Government Communication Sector in the UAE Government Media Office; Matar Ali Al Romaithi, Chief Economic Development Officer (Tawazun); Mahra Al Ali, Head of Consular Affairs and Nationals Services Section (UAE Embassy in Ukraine) and Moza Al Dhaheri, International Affair Coordinator (Food and Water Security Office); Hamad Al Shehhi, Principal Investments Portfolio Management (Abu Dhabi Development Holding Company); and Sultan Rashid Al Sakeb, Assistant Executive Director – Payments and Baking Operations (Central Bank of the UAE).

Other participants from Ukraine were Roman Leshchenko, Minister of Agriculture Policy and Food of Ukraine (Ministry of Agriculture Policy and Food of Ukraine); Yuriy Husyev, Director General of Ukroboronprom (Ukrainian State Concern); Olexandr Kubrakov, Head of Ukravtodo (Ukrainian State Road Company); Dmytro Sennychenko Chairman of the State Property Fund of Ukraine; Yulia Sciridenko, Deputy Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine; Rustem Umerov, Member of Verkhovna Rada (Parliament) of Ukraine and Tymofiy Mylovanov, Advisor to the Head of Office of the President of Ukraine.

Source: Asda'a BCW