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UK and UAE strengthen ties during Taskforce meeting

FCO Minister for the Middle East Alistair Burt hosted UK-UAE talks in London on 24 January.

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The UK-UAE Taskforce met for the ninth time in London on 24 January. The delegations, led by Alistair Burt, Foreign Office Minister for the Middle East and North Africa, and His Excellency Dr Anwar Gargash, the UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, discussed a range of issues including: trade and investment, defence and security, consular relations, education and cultural cooperation. They also discussed cooperation on foreign policy, with a focus on Syria, Iran and Yemen. The Ministers signed a Prisoner Transfer Agreement which will help enable British and UAE nationals to serve the remainder of their prison sentences in their own country. Alan Duncan, Minister of State for International Development, joined the meeting to discuss UK-UAE cooperation in this field.

Speaking after the meeting, Alistair Burt said:

“I was pleased to welcome Dr Anwar Gargash, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, to London for the ninth meeting of the UK-UAE Taskforce. The UAE is a close and valued partner of the UK and the Taskforce has grown to become a central pillar of our effective partnership across a range of issues, from education, trade and investment to counter terrorism. I look forward to continuing our close cooperation in 2013, particularly strengthening our bilateral trade through the UK/UAE Business Council and working together on the UAE hosted Anti-Piracy conference later this year.”

Further information

The full Taskforce communiqué is available here

The UAE is one of the priorities for the Gulf Initiative through which the British Government is committed to elevating its relations with all Gulf countries. We are increasing our co-operation with Gulf States across the board: in culture, education, defence and security, trade and investment, and foreign policy co-operation. The UK-UAE Taskforce was established in June 2010 when Prime Minister David Cameron visited the UAE and has continued to go from strength to strength.

Published 25 January 2013