Abdullah bin Touq Al Marri, Minister of Economy, participated in the 13th edition of the City Week 2023 Forum, running in London on 24- 26 April.
Through its three sessions, the latest edition of the forum discusses the issues of climate change, green financing and sustainability; institutional adoption; regulation of digital assets; and digitisation and innovation in capital markets.
Addressing the Climate Change, Green Financing, and Sustainability Summit, Bin Touq said: “The creation of investment opportunities in new economy sectors such as the space industry, renewable energy, circular economy and advanced technology is key to ensuring sustainable global economic growth. These sectors have the potential to contribute to building a more prosperous future for humanity.”
He added: “By investing in new economy sectors including renewable energy, the UAE has made significant strides in its transition towards a more flexible and diversified, knowledge-based economic model. The country began financing clean energy projects more than 15 years ago, and today, its investments in this space exceed USD 40 billion. Besides, the UAE plans to invest additional USD 160 billion over the next three decades to explore more promising investment opportunities in this key sector. These efforts will help solidify its position as an attractive destination for investments in new economy sectors in line with the UAE’s goal to attract AED 550 billion in FDI to these sectors by 2030.”
The Minister of Economy noted: “Under the directives of its wise leadership and in light of the objectives of the 50 and the UAE Centennial 2071 goals, the UAE government has launched several successful strategic initiatives to enhance reliance on new economy sectors to drive the growth of the national economy. These include the UAE Circular Economy Policy 2021-2031, which contributed to advancing the comprehensive and sustainable economic and social development in the country. Also noteworthy is the UAE Green Agenda 2030, which enhanced the competitiveness of the national economy and supported the sustainable use of natural resources. All these strategies are currently contributing to the national GDP growth. According to the Central Bank, the UAE’s real GDP is expected to grow by 7.6 per cent in 2022, and by 3.9 per cent in 2023 before rising to 4.3 per cent in 2024.”
Bin Touq explained that the UAE realized that the climate change challenge also present promising opportunities to advance global economic growth and create more investment opportunities for governments and the private sector. Based on this belief, the country harnessed modern technology to create new economic opportunities in the solar, wind, Hydrogen energy and electric vehicles. These initiatives support the UAE’s strategic plans to build a clean economy as part of its efforts to achieve climate neutrality by 2050.
Bin Touq emphasised that the future of financing and investment must be based on sustainability, adding that the UAE is one of the largest investors globally in renewable energy projects, with investments worth USD 50 billion in more than 70 countries. He pointed out that the country has also allocated nearly USD 50 billion to accelerating clean energy transition over the next decade. In addition, a USD 100 billion strategic partnership has been signed with the USA to fund the deployment of 100 gigawatts of clean energy globally by 2035.
Bin Touq also pointed out that the UAE is working on strengthening its historical ties with the United Kingdom. H.E. stated that the ‘Partnership for the Future’ framework established by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, has helped facilitate financing and innovation in new economic sectors. In this regard, the Minister of Economy said: “As part of the investment partnership between Mubadala Investment Company and the British Investment Office, additional investments of £10 billion (USD 12.5 billion) have been allocated in the areas of energy transmission, including battery storage, wind energy, infrastructure, technology, and life sciences. The UAE supports the UK government’s plan for a green industrial revolution, while Masdar has invested nearly £4 billion in renewable energy projects across the UK, and recently announced a £1 billion investment in British battery storage technology. These investments represent the largest share of Masdar’s investment portfolio outside of the UAE.”
Bin Touq stressed that the formation of investment partnerships in the sectors of the new economy and green projects are key to the UAE’s aspirations to strengthen economic cooperation with various global partners. He pointed out that the upcoming Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28), scheduled to be hosted by Abu Dhabi in 2023, will be an ideal platform to enhance global efforts to stimulate more investments in clean projects and support green financing to create a global low-carbon economic model.
Bin Touq also called on the countries of the world to move forward with the implementation of policies that support sustainability and green transformation. The climate challenge that we are witnessing today should be addressed by promoting the shift towards new economy sectors. This will also help create more green job opportunities and build a better future for upcoming generations, he noted.
City Week is an annual global forum that is held in the British capital, London. The event brings together more than 1,000 senior decision-makers and economic officials in the United Kingdom and the world to create more effective solutions to political issues and economic challenges that face the world. This year’s edition tackles three main issues centering around climate change, green finance and sustainability; institutional adoption and regulation of digital assets; and digitization and innovation in capital markets.
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