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UAE Ministers and officials have affirmed today the importance of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between the UAE and Georgia, which aims to increase the bilateral non-oil trade between the two countries to US$1.5 billion in five years.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and Irakli Garibashvili, Prime Minister of Georgia, witnessed the signing ceremony, today, in Dubai in the presence of a number of ministers and senior officials from the UAE and Georgia.
Mohamed Bin Hadi Al Hussaini, Minister of State for Financial Affairs, noted: “The UAE-Georgia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement is the latest step in our journey towards a resilient, outward-looking and future-ready economy.”
He concluded: “The CEPA agenda is one of the principal tools in securing in the UAE’s financial sustainability and strengthening the representation of our financial interests across the world, both of which will consolidate our reputation as trusted partner for trade and investment. It also supports our ongoing commitment to fostering an environment conducive to FDI, enhancing the nation’s value proposition as a global hub for business.”
Suhail Bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, said: “The UAE-Georgia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement represents another pillar of our nation’s foreign trade agenda, which is making a significant contribution to our national growth targets. Georgia’s location between the Middle East, Asia, and Europe ensures it has considerable potential as a regional and international trade hub, and the expertise of our private sector and the resources of our investment community can help it develop and expand key sectors such as logistics, transport, tourism and hospitality.”
Al Mazrouei added: “Importantly, Georgia has a clear and proven commitment to renewable energy, which provides an opportunity for both capacity building and knowledge sharing. Renewables contribute 85 percent of the nation’s electricity generation, among the highest in the world, and they have pledged to increase this further through investment in solar, wind, hydrogen and geothermal projects. This opens the door to partnership opportunities as we look to scale our own commitment to alternative energy sources.”
Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, said that the signing of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with Georgia offers exciting new opportunities for the UAE’s exporters, industrialists and manufacturers.
Al Jaber added: “Located in a dynamic region that is pursuing ambitious growth, Georgia’s economy has many synergies with our own, featuring business-friendly regulation, various enablers and incentives and a well-developed industrial logistics and infrastructure.”
He noted that the UAE-Georgia CEPA will drive a new era of bilateral trade and investment. He affirmed that the UAE’s main non-oil export categories will find a receptive market in Georgia’s rapidly developing industrial sector and wider economy.
Al Jaber concluded: “Our leadership's commitment to boosting global partnerships and cooperation further enhances the UAE's investment attractiveness. This supports the country's business environment, which is conducive to growth, in line with the objectives of the National Strategy for Industry and Advanced Technology. It also enhances our capacity to attract foreign investment to the national industrial sector, strengthening the UAE's position as a hub for manufacturing and innovation.”
Abdulla Bin Touq Al Marri, Minister of Economy, said: “CEPA represents a new step forward in the UAE’s foreign trade agenda, embodying our ambition to build a network of trading partners in strategically important regions around the world. The agreement links the UAE to one of the most resilient economies in the Caucasus region.”
He said that Georgia's GDP grew by 10.1% in 2022, demonstrating remarkable resilience during a year full of challenges facing the global economy. This strong economic performance was stimulated by Georgia's inflows of foreign direct investment FDI, high volume of exports, the growth of the tourism and transportation sectors, and huge investments in public works.
Bin Touq noted that this economic environment provides opportunities for UAE exports of services and for the investment community in the UAE. He added: “Through this agreement, the United Arab Emirates and Georgia can build an ambitious and mutually beneficial future partnership that will stimulate more opportunities for the two countries, stimulate more prosperity in these high-growth sectors, and usher in a new era of opportunities for the two friendly countries.”
Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, said that the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with Georgia offers another key step in UAE’s efforts to enhancing food security and the sustainable trade of food products.
She added: “Georgia boasts a favourable climate for agriculture and rich, fertile soil capable of growing a wide number of crops. The UAE can not only provide a principal destination for these products but support the development of new export markets, particularly in Asia, through its strategic location. The UAE is keen to advance sustainable food production globally, which can build resilience to climate change and promote the linkages between health, nutrition and planetary well-being – and Georgia’s agricultural sector can play an important role in advancing this agenda.”
Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade, said: "The UAE-Georgia CEPA unites two countries that have complementary strengths – both nations are strategic crossroads for trade, both possess dynamic, rapidly-expanding service economies and both share a similar vision for attracting FDI – with policies that welcome business and promote robust growth. This agreement lays the path for a new era of cooperation and will fast-track opportunities between private sectors on both sides, delivering a range of benefits to both country’s exporters and manufacturers.”
Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh, Minister of State- Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said: “The signing of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement between the UAE and Georgia marks a significant milestone in our pursuit of a future-proof economy built on diversity, innovation and knowledge. The UAE continues to be an open and collaborative nation, fostering strong partnerships with like-minded, pro-growth nations around the world. Through this agreement with Georgia, we aim to strengthen economic ties, bolster the multilateral trading system and secure vital north-south supply chains.”
Khaled Mohamed Balama, Governor of the Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE), said: “As part of its efforts to expand existing relations with international counterparts through Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreements, the UAE is enhancing its competitiveness, bolstering exports and investment flows, and promoting industrial production. These agreements also foster trust in the UAE’s business environment and safeguard financial stability.”
He added: “Georgia’s growth ambitions and strategic location make it an important partner for the UAE. We look forward to cooperating more broadly to achieve common interests by strengthening our economic and financial relationships, and aligning our payment processes in accordance with the latest systems.”
Ahmed Abdullah bin Lahej Al Falasi, Director General of Customs -The Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs, and Port Security, said: “The UAE-Georgia CEPA is an important deal that will accelerate the free flow of goods between our two nations, and further consolidate the UAE’s status a facilitator of global trade – and a champion of the multilateral trading system. The nation’s CEPA agenda is helping to increase the UAE’s influence in global trade and the deal with Georgia provides another opportunity to secure vital supply chains, introduce new technologies and processes, and provide a model for cross-border collaboration in areas such as payments and information-sharing.”
“The agreement with Georgia will not only remove or reduce tariffs on the majority of goods, it will eliminate unnecessary barriers to trade, creating a new alliance of growth that connects the Gulf and the Caucasus region,” he added.
Abdullah Al Basti, Secretary-General of the Executive Council of the Emirate of Dubai, said: “The UAE-Georgia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement is the latest achievement in the UAE’s mission to solidify its role as a facilitator of global trade. Georgia's remarkable growth trajectory and favourable business environment, coupled with its shared commitment to open, rules-based trade, offer our exporters and investors a broad range of opportunities in the heart of the strategically important Caucasus region.
He concluded: “Equally, the UAE continues to top global indices as one of the most attractive business and investment destinations in the world. Our dynamic, business-friendly ecosystem, combined with world-class logistics capabilities, provides a springboard for Georgian businesses eyeing exciting new opportunities in the MENA region and beyond.”
The UAE-Georgia CEPA is part of the UAE’s new foreign trade agenda, which seeks deeper ties with strategic allies around the world to accelerate economic recovery and secure vital supply chains. The UAE-Georgia agreement is expected to enter into force later this year.
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