Three British Nationals who have made an outstanding contribution to business relations and defence diplomacy between the UK and the UAE were named in Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II New Year’s Honours List 2014.
Timothy Charles Clark, President of Emirates Airline, and Michael Hardwick Tomalin OBE, lately Chief Executive, National Bank of Abu Dhabi, were both recognised for their work to boost UK and UAE business relations.
Colonel Rupert William Robson, late Royal Regiment Artillery and Defence Attache at the British Embassy, was recognised for his distinguished military career and contribution to defence diplomacy between the UK and the UAE.
Sir Timothy has been awarded the honour of Knight of the Most Excellent ORDER OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE (KBE) for his services to British prosperity and to the aviation industry and Mr Tomalin has been appointed Companion of the Order OF ST MICHAEL AND ST GEORGE (CMG) for services to UK/UAE business co-operation and to the British community in Abu Dhabi. Colonel Robson has been appointed Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE), for his outstanding role as Defence Attache in developing UK UAE defence relations.
Sir Timothy is an outstanding British business leader and premier airline strategist who has made an enormous contribution over 28 years to British prosperity, supporting British industry and economic interests over a long time. He has opened up UK/UAE business opportunities and under his leadership Emirates’ aeroplane and engine purchasing strategy has secured thousands of British engineering and aerospace jobs. He has also led wider support including assistance to British nationals in distress abroad and innovative sponsorship roles.
Michael Tomalin was appointed Chief Executive of the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) in 1999 when it was still a little known local bank. Since then he has grown NBAD ten-fold, with branches in 18 countries across 5 continents (including in London) and received “the safest bank in the Middle East” award from Global Finance. Through his skilled leadership Mr Tomalin has made an outstanding contribution to the perceptions of UK banking and has provided advice on economic policy and market entry for British businesses. Mr. Tomalin was appointed as Non Executive Director of NBAD following his resignation as Chief Executive on 1 July 2013.
Colonel Robson has been Defence Attache at the British Embassy in the UAE for four years, showing outstanding leadership of the defence relations between the UK and the UAE.
Her Majesty’s Ambassador to the UAE Dominic Jermey said:
The basis for the incredibly close relationship between the UK and the UAE is the close bond between our people – this comes from the leadership at the top of both our Governments and, just as importantly, from the people who drive the day to day business between our nations. Both Sir Timothy and Michael are outstanding businessmen who have contributed enormously to the partnership between our countries, as well as being integral to the successful development of two pre-eminent UAE institutions. They also play important roles as leading members of the British community in the UAE and I would like to extend my sincere congratulations to both of them on this recognition. I am also delighted that one of my Embassy team, Colonel Robson, who has shown such leadership of the defence relationship, has been singled out for an award. This is a richly deserved recognition of the outstanding contribution Rupert has made both to defence diplomacy and to our wider efforts to strengthen relations between the UK and the UAE.
UK Honours are granted to deserving and high-achieving people from every section of the community and from overseas. The system rewards people for merit, service or bravery.