UAE and Italy explore joint opportunities in renewables, tourism and FinTech

Officials from the two countries held talks in Milan ahead of Investopia Europe event

From left: Abdullah bin Touq, UAE Minister of Economy; Daniela Santanche, Italy’s Minister of Tourism; and Ignazio La Russa, president of the Italian Senate. Photo: Wam
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The UAE and Italy held a series of bilateral discussions in Milan aimed at boosting economic relations and creating new investment opportunities as the Emirates seeks to strengthen trade ties globally.

Abdullah bin Touq, the UAE’s Minister of Economy, who is leading a nearly 50-member delegation to Italy for the Emirates-led Investopia Europe event, held meetings with Italian ministers, government officials, businessmen and investors from both countries, state news agency Wam reported on Thursday.

Officials explored opportunities in new economic sectors, including renewable energy, tourism and financial technology.

“The UAE and Italy share strong, continuously evolving relations, with the unlimited support of both leaderships. Our ties will continue to grow in all aspects, supporting common interests and prosperity,” Mr bin Touq said.

Abdullah bin Touq, the UAE’s Minister of Economy, left, is leading a 50-member delegation to Italy. Photo: Wam

He also highlighted the importance of the Investopia event in boosting investments and encouraging business communities to explore more opportunities in new economic sectors.

Investopia is one of the events included in the Projects of the 50 developmental and economic initiative announced by the UAE government in 2021, aimed at accelerating the nation’s growth over the next five decades.

The summit’s inaugural event took place in March last year along with the World Government Summit in Dubai.

The UAE aims to attract $150 billion in foreign investments by 2031 as part of efforts to diversify its economy away from oil.

Last year, the UAE’s non-oil foreign trade reached a record Dh2.23 trillion ($607.1 billion), as the Arab world’s second-largest economy accelerated efforts to reduce its dependence on hydrocarbons and boost its economic partnerships globally.

This was the first time the UAE’s non-oil foreign trade crossed the Dh2 trillion mark.

Mr bin Touq urged Italy's private sector to seek opportunities in the UAE and highlighted the incentives offered by the country to boost growth through platforms such as Investopia as well as comprehensive economic partnership agreements.

The UAE has signed four Cepa deals with India, Israel, Indonesia and Turkey so far, with plans to sign a total of 26 such agreements.

“We will work alongside our partners in the UAE to enhance bilateral relations and increase trade and investment exchanges in the fields of technology and circular economy, and other areas of common interest,” said Giancarlo Giorgetti, Italy's Minister of Economy and Finance.

Abdullah bin Touq, UAE’s Minister of Economy, and Giancarlo Giorgetti, Italy's Minister of Economy and Finance. Photo: Wam

In March last year, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni met President Sheikh Mohamed in Abu Dhabi, where they witnessed the signing of several agreements.

They also discussed ways to build a strategic partnership between the two countries, especially in the economic, investment and trade sectors.

Mr bin Touq said the tourism sector is among the top priorities on the UAE’s agenda.

“We look forward to exchanging expertise with the Italian side to foster tourism industry’s sustainable growth and governance in accordance with international best practices.”

Updated: May 18, 2023, 6:25 PM