H.H. Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chief of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince's Court, has reaffirmed the commitment of the UAE to continue working with its international partners to launch ambitious initiatives and programmes to produce energy from clean and sustainable sources.
In his speech at the inaugural conference of the International Solar Alliance, ISA, organised on Sunday in New Delhi, Sheikh Hamed conveyed the greetings of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and the UAE government and people, wishing participants success in their efforts.
The event was attended by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron, the leaders of the countries who took the initiative to launch the ISA, along with a number of senior officials and representatives of participating nations.
Sheikh Hamed said, "It gives me a great pleasure to praise the efforts made by the French presidency throughout recent years to mobilise global efforts aimed at addressing the issue of climate change and its contribution to finalising the historic Paris Agreement. I also appreciate the important role played by the Republic of India in forging new alliances to accelerate international efforts in this regard, at the forefront of which is the ISA, under whose umbrella we are honoured to meet today."
He added, "The UAE has divided its efforts in this regards into two parallel tracks, the first of which is the development of the national solar sector through the establishment of world-class solar energy projects." He referred, in particular, to the projects currently being implemented at the Zayed Renewable Energy Complex in Abu Dhabi and the Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai with the total capacity of 5000 MW.
"With the projects currently being implemented and the future ones included in the 'UAE Energy Strategy', we are in a position to raise our ambitions to increase the contribution of the clean energy sources to the national energy sector to 27 percent by 2021 and 50 percent by 2050, thus reducing the cost of electricity production significantly," he said.
The UAE’s efforts in developing renewable energy research and technologies have also contributed to the country’s presence as a key partner in many large renewable energy projects across the world, he pointed out. "We have so far invested, via Masdar, around US$2.7 billion in renewable energy projects worldwide that cost about US$8.5 billion and their total production capacity is about 2.7 GW," he said.
Sheikh Hamed went on to say that the second track is to continue the UAE's efforts to promote the use of renewable energy in the world, particularly in developing countries and islands, by providing sources of funding. "In this context, we would like to mention the initiative taken by the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development to earmark US$350 million to support renewable energy projects in developing countries via the International Renewable Energy Agency, IRENA, together with the assistance we provided through other channels. The aid allocated by the UAE for renewable energy projects has reached around US$1 billion, placing it as the world's largest donor in this regards in proportion to its gross national income," he said.
The Chief of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince's Court noted that international cooperation is a fundamental pillar of the UAE's foreign policy, adding, "We believe that concerted international efforts are one of the important keys to addressing the major challenges facing our world today, particularly climate challenges. Our presence as a founding member of the ISA and our ratification of the Framework Convention supports this policy."
"I am very pleased to take this opportunity to affirm the UAE’s support for the realising of the ISA's objectives and its efforts in mobilising the required funding to develop solar technologies, reducing their cost and increasing our reliance on them to achieve our common sustainable development goals," Sheikh Hamed concluded.