• The UAE delegation was led by Minister of State Khalifa Shaheen Almarar
  • He reiterated the UAE's keenness on strengthening its ties with the Pacific Island nations
  • The second Ministerial Meeting witnessed the issuance of the Riyadh Declaration

The UAE participated in the second Ministerial Meeting of Members of the Arab League and Pacific Small Island Developing States in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The Emirati delegation was led by Minister of State Khalifa Shaheen Almarar.

The meeting centered around ways to boost cooperation between Arab and Pacific Island nations across various sectors. Participants emphasized the importance of enhancing joint partnerships to deepen relations and promote peace and stability in the region. They also highlighted the importance of strengthening coordination to foster the development of Arab and Pacific Island nations.

During the meeting, held on Monday, Almarar stressed that the conduct of the second Ministerial Meeting springs from the shared vision of the participants to enhance cooperation among Arab and Pacific Island countries following the successful first Ministerial Meeting, which was attended by foreign ministers of the countries involved on June 24, 2010 in the UAE.

The second Ministerial Meeting issued the Riyadh Declaration on Tuesday to enhance cooperation between the Arab States and the Pacific Small Island Developing States. Included in the declaration was the nations' support for Saudi Arabia's bid to host Expo 2030 in Riyadh.

Almarar reiterated the UAE's keenness on strengthening its ties with the Pacific Island nations, highlighting the recent official visit of Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan to several Pacific Island countries. He also emphasized the UAE's goal of strengthening ties with the countries in a wide range of fields, including the economy and trade.

Noting that the volume of non-oil trade between the UAE and Pacific Island countries exceeded USD 100 million in 2022, he said the UAE aspires to even raise the volume of its non-oil trade with them. He also said the country aims to ink more economic agreements with the Pacific Island countries to further promote economic and development cooperation between the two parties.

Almarar also took the opportunity to promote the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28), which the UAE will host in November 2023 at Expo City Dubai. He stated that the conference will provide a venue for stakeholders to discuss cooperation between the Arab and Pacific sides in combating climate change and curbing its effects on the planet.

Saudia Arabia's capital Riyadh, seen here in this photograph from January 17, 2020, is home to some eight million people