UAE Minister of Economy: Belt and Road Initiative is a gift to the world

Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansoori, UAE Minister of Economy,addresses the forum. (People's Daily Online/Kong Qi)

During the UAE-China Economic Forum held in Beijing on Monday, Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansoori, the UAE Minister of Economy, shared his vision about the Belt and Road Initiative. "It is an excellent gift to the world, I see, that China is providing," Mansoori told People's Daily Online that the Belt and Road Initiative is not made for a single country, but for the world.

With more than 500 representatives from China and the United Arab Emirates (UAE)'s political and business sectors attending, the UAE-China Economic Forum yielded fruitful outcomes.

Earlier that day, Chinese President Xi Jinping called for joint efforts with the UAE to accelerate high-quality building of the Belt and Road when holding talks with Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, crown prince of Abu Dhabi of the UAE in Beijing. The two countries signed a number of landmark programs for bilateral cooperation.

"We continue to look for more opportunities and new projects that serve the interests of both countries, in line with this initiative," said Mansoori when addressing the forum.

Mansoori believed the UAE needs to connect the world with the best way, by using ports, road networks, railway networks, airports, air cargo, and so on. The Belt and Road Initiative is like a revolution created for this world. "It is not going to be only coming from China but also coming from all other countries connected to the network. Every country in the world is going to benefit from the initiative," he said.

According to China Daily, after the talks between President Xi and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed, the two leaders witnessed a ceremony for the exchange of cooperative agreements in areas such as environmental protection, artificial intelligence and the peaceful use of nuclear energy. The two countries will conduct Belt and Road cooperation in production capacity, investment, and financing in the Middle East and North Africa.

Mansoori emphasized that China is a very important partner for the UAE at all levels. The UAE saw the initiative as a crucial component to its sophisticated trade network. It's a win-win situation for China and the UAE. "We have the ability and development, together we can establish this kind of cooperation to improve the infrastructure, lives, and economies of these nations as we move forwards," said Mansoori.

"We have been working on this agenda for some years now. Oil and gas is a very important part of the cooperation between our two sides. We encourage the joint manufacturing of certain products in the UAE with Chinese companies. It's necessary not only for the UAE market but also for the regional market. We also look at new IT technology, artificial intelligence, Internet, and telecommunication technology, all of which are huge potentials. We are working together with the Chinese side," Mansoori noted when highlighting some main sectors the two countries can work on.

According to Xinhua, Xi voiced the hope to realize the goal of 200 billion U.S. dollars of the two-way trade by 2030 during the talks with Sheikh Mohammed.

"China currently accounts for more than 10 percent of the UAE's total global trade. We are not worried about challenges because the world has changed. The issue of protectionism does not work for all nations. Our world is open. You have to accept challenges and competitions, or you cannot survive in this world," said Mansoori, expressing his confidence in the UAE's bilateral trade with China.

Mansoori also mentioned that China has advanced 5G technology, and that the UAE attaches great importance to cooperating with China in regards to 5G technology. "5G is a technology that will be accommodated by many nations, and the UAE is one of them. We cannot lag behind," he added.

Editor: 曹家宁