The UAE and South Korea are joining forces to further develop the hydrogen economy and collaborate on industrial and technological policies.
The UAE’s ministry of industry and advanced technology, and South Korea’s ministry of trade, industry and energy signed two agreements on Thursday.
The agreements will support the UAE’s industrial sector, help the country to diversify, encourage foreign direct investment and strengthen the country’s research and development ecosystem, Dr Sultan Al Jaber, UAE’s minister of industry and advanced technology, said.
“The Republic of Korea possesses a wealth of experience in the adoption of Fourth Industrial Revolution solutions, therefore it represents an ideal partner on our path towards a tech-powered, knowledge-based economy,” he added.
The UAE is the largest trade partner of Korea in the Middle East and North Africa region.
By the end of 2019, the volume of bilateral non-oil trade amounted to Dh18.3 billion. In the past few years, the two economies have stepped up their business in the fields of technology, defence, culture, education, renewable, nuclear energy and other sectors.
Under the first agreement, the countries agreed to support laws and national policies governing hydrogen trade – a lucrative area that energy producers are tapping into amid the rush for clean energy.
The agreement will also pave the way for greater collaboration between the Abu Dhabi Hydrogen Alliance, which comprises Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, Mubadala Investment Company and industrial holding firm ADQ, and H2KOREA that represents the public and private hydrogen fuel cell industry in the Asian country.
The ministries plan to run joint feasibility studies and pilot projects with a focus on hydrogen, carbon recycling and related low-emission technologies, industries and value chains.
As per the second agreement, the UAE and South Korea will exchange regulatory best practices in industrial development. Some of the key fields of interest include MedTech, space technology, AgriTech and the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Despite the coronavirus-related restrictions imposed last year, Korea and the UAE engaged in “active co-operation, including business interactions, as well as pandemic control” measures, Sung Yun-mo, Korean minister of trade, industry and energy, said.
“We are pleased to establish co-operation in fostering future industries and promising start-ups through the signing of the two new agreements,” said Mr Yun-mo, adding that Korea is keen to expand the scope of the existing partnership with a focus on the development of low-carbon technologies, IT and the zero-contact economy.
The ministers also stressed the importance of joint efforts to accelerate the post-Covid economic recovery and the transition to a low-carbon future.