Thursday 21, July 2016

Abu Dhabi – MENA Herald: A UAE delegation led by the Ministry of Economy concluded its productive participation in the activities of the 14th UN Conference on Trade and Development held in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi from July 17 till 22, 2016.
The group was headed by H.E. Juma Mohammed Al Kait, Assistant Undersecretary for Foreign Trade Affairs, along with H.E. Abdul Razak Mohamed Hadi, UAE Ambassador to the Republic of Kenya; Hassan Issa Al Houssani, UAE Deputy Ambassador to the Republic of Kenya; Ayesha Alkobaisi, the Ministry of Economy’s Director of International Organizations Affairs; Saeed Al Shamsi, Deputy Director of International and Security Cooperation; Ali Salem Buharoon, Director at the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Authority; Mo’dad Al Saher, Diplomat; and Youssef Diab, Economy Specialist at the Ministry of Economy.
UNCTAD kicked off under the theme ‘From decision to action: Moving towards an inclusive and equitable global economic environment for trade and development.’ It discussed cooperation in the face of trade and development obstacles as well as the challenges and opportunities confronted by the global economic system in several areas, notably trade, investment, finance, and technology.
The Conference was of significant global importance for being the first high-level international meeting to be held after the official launch of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by countries around the world at the United Nations Summit held in New York in September 2015.
In his speech delivered during the general debate session of the Conference which concluded on July 20, H.E. Juma Al Kait highlighted the important aspects of the pioneering Emirati developmental experience. He said that the conference is being held at a time when the global economy is facing multiple challenges, particularly the decline in oil prices, a slowdown in the global economy and political unrest, all of which have had a negative impact on the flow of foreign investment and the movement of international trade.
H.E. Juma Al Kait added that the continuous increase in food and commodity prices and the wide disparity between states has led to deeper economic and social disparities between countries.
The Assistant Undersecretary emphasized that UNCTAD provides an important opportunity to discuss these challenges and to promote economic cooperation in order to find the best solutions. He also said that the UAE is keen to support the role of UNCTAD in promoting the building of a social and economic system that is equitable and provides balanced opportunities. He further noted that the economic power of the state, its strategic geographical location and its prestigious standing with the international business community are significant factors in support of UNCTAD’s objectives.
H.E. Al Kait noted as well that the UAE Government has worked to develop legislation for ensuring the provision of an attractive investment environment, facilitating the ease of doing business, encouraging innovation, and supporting the growth of small and medium enterprises in line with UAE Vision 2021.
He said that the UAE ranks first regionally and 16th globally among the most promising economies for foreign direct investments for 2016 to 2018, according to the 2016 World Investment Report issued recently by UNCTAD.
H.E. emphasized as well that the UAE has made great strides in the field of gender equality, women’s empowerment, and maximizing the contributions of women to economic and social development. He shared that Emirati women account for 66 per cent of the public sector workforce. He concluded his speech by confirming the importance of fostering international cooperation in order to address the challenges faced by different countries and establish a comprehensive and fair global trade, development and economic environment.
During the conference, the UAE delegation held a bilateral meeting with Ms. Arancha Gonzalez, Executive Director of the Center for International Trade. The group explored areas for further cooperation between the Center and the Ministry of Economy, especially with regards to trade and small and medium-sized enterprises. At the conclusion of the meeting, H.E. Juma Al Kait presented an official invitation to Ms. Gonzalez to participate in the Global Trade Development Week taking place in Dubai at the end of October this year.