UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has received today Prime Minister Wen Jiabao of China at the Presidential Terminal at Abu Dhabi International Airport.
Wen’s visit to the UAE is the first by a Chinese premier since the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries. During his visit, the two governments are expected sign a joint statement on establishing a strategic partnership between the two countries, which will become a guideline document for bilateral relations.
The trade between the UAE and China grew steadily in the past decade and is expected to have reached $35 billion in 2011 despite the global economic downturn, thus placing the UAE as the second largest trading partner of China in the Middle East.
Statistics showed that the bilateral trade volume reached $32 billion in the first 11 months of 2011, rising 38.6 per cent year-on-year. Exports from the UAE to China soared 88.9 per cent to $7.6 billion while imports grew 28 per cent at $24.3 billion.
China is the UAE’s second largest non-oil partner, and Emirates has become China’s top export market in the Arab world.
Mohammed unveils UAE's Green Economy
The launch of a long-term national initiative to build green economy in the UAE under the slogan 'A green economy for sustainable development' was announced in Dubai on Sunday by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
Through this initiative, the UAE aims to become one of the world leaders as well as a centre for the export and re-export of green products and technologies, and to maintain a sustainable environment to support long-term economic growth.
The initiative includes a range of programmes and policies in the areas of energy, agriculture, investment and sustainable transport in addition to new environmental and construction policies that aim to raise the quality of life in the country.
Sheikh Mohammed asserted that the UAE, under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, seeks to become a global hub and a successful model of the new green economy, so as to enhance the country's competitiveness and sustainability of its development and preserve its environment for future generations.
Sheikh Mohammed said: "Our goal from this national initiative is clear, that is, to build an economy that protects the environment as well as an environment that supports the growth of the economy. We in the UAE, within the vision 2021, are striving to build a diversified economy based on knowledge and innovation, through which we can provide excellent employment opportunities to our citizens. Through this, we can protect our natural and environmental resources, and strengthen our competitive position in global markets, especially in the areas of renewable energy products and technologies on the green economy".
He added: "We are serious about the transformation of our development process to reach the first position on the global level. During the next nine years and up to the year 2021 we will launch a range of initiatives and projects in all areas to achieve our goal".
Sheikh Mohammed went on : "I ask everyone to prepare for a new phase in the growth of the UAE".
"We chose to launch this national initiative to coincide with the World Future Energy Summit 2012 in Abu Dhabi which will be attended by 26,000 people and delegations from 140 countries, so as to reaffirm our commitment to the world of our serious endeavour to diversify energy sources and preserve the environment, as well as to become a model for all countries that want to strive to achieve the same goal," added Sheikh Mohammed.
Six major areas
The Green Economy Initiative includes six major fields covering a wide range of legislation, policies, programs and projects.
The first field of green energy consists of a group of programmes and policies aimed to promote the production and use of renewable energy and related technologies as well as to promote the use of clean fuel for energy production. It also calls for the work to develop standards and enhance the efficiency of energy consumption in both the public and private sectors.
The second field includes government policies aimed to encourage investments in green
economy and to facilitate the production, import, export and re-export of green products and technologies, as well as to work to create job opportunities for citizens in these areas and preparation of national cadres in this field.
The third field of the initiative comes under the title of the green city. It consists of a large group of urban planning policies aimed to preserve the environment and to raise the efficiency of housing and buildings environmentally. It also includes initiatives to promote environment friendly transportation or the so-called sustainable transport. This is in addition to programs designed to purify the air in cities in the UAE to provide a healthy environment for all.
The fourth field consists of means for dealing with the effects of climate change through policies and programs designed to reduce carbon emissions from industrial and commercial sites. It will also promote organic agriculture through a series of incentives at the federal and local levels. It also includes programmes to maintain biodiversity and to protect the ecological balance, wildlife and marine environment in the UAE.
The fifth field of the Green Economy Initiative is called the green life, which involves a set of policies and programs aimed at rationalising the use of water resources, electricity, and natural resources as well as projects to recycle waste generated by commercial or individual uses. It also includes awareness-raising initiatives and environmental education.
The sixth field of the Green Economy Initiative includes development and promotion of green technology, and its first phase of its implementation includes carbon capture and conversion of waste into energy.