Promising Prospects for UAE-German Relations

  • 7 February 2008

The visit by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to Berlin began on Wednesday in response to an official invitation extended by German Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel. The visit is of great significance and has wide-ranging implications.

First, this visit reflects the UAE’s approach toward broadening international relations, especially with major powers on the international scene. This approach is a highlight of the UAE’s foreign policy, which has extended its reach to major international powers in the recent past. Second, the significance of this visit lies in the context of the special status that Germany commands at the international level, being the major member of the European Union and whose role is constantly evolving on the international stage. Undoubtedly, this visit provides a valuable opportunity to strengthen UAE-German relations in light of the important advancements in their relations in recent years. The volume of trade between the two countries reached an important watermark during this period rising from 1.95 billion Euros in 1999 to 5.22 billion Euros by October 2007. In addition, direct German investment in the UAE rose from 215 million Euros in 2002 to 461 million Euros in 2005. Certainly, these figures reflect the importance of trade relations of the UAE with Germany, in the context of German trade with Arab countries. This makes the UAE the main trading partner of Germany, in context of the latter’s trade with other Arab countries. UAE-German relations have taken important strides in the recent past and one can find promising prospects for the development of these relations at multifarious levels. Therefore, the visit of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum heralds a new phase in bilateral relations between the two countries. In fact, the UAE’s progress in the sphere of foreign relations is based on the comprehensive progress made by the country that enables it to be a significant trading partner with several important economic powers at the international level. At the same time, it reflects the success of the UAE’s foreign policy that is based on the process of dialogue and cooperation among various countries at the international level.