The UK and the UAE: Our joint ambition for growth

Our ambitious plan for a Green Revolution can neatly entwine with UAE Next 50

Minister for Investment Lord Grimstone of Boscobel arrives in Downing Street, Westminster. PA
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This week, I welcomed the world’s most important investors to London for our Global Investment Summit, hosted by the UK’s prime minister and featuring a reception with Queen Elizabeth II.

The summit, a unique showcase of British innovation, especially in green technology and finance, made it clear why the UK is the best place to invest.

I’m delighted to say that delegates included business leaders from the UAE.

The UAE is already a strong partner for the UK, evidenced by the recent announcement of the Partnership for the Future, and the signing of the UAE-UK Sovereign Investment Partnership between the UK’s Office for Investment and Mubadala Investment Company, which commits £10 billion ($13.7bn) of investment in four key innovation-led sectors — technology, infrastructure, health care and life sciences, plus clean and renewable energy — that will support job creation in both countries, strengthen national research and development capabilities and originate new areas of investment collaboration.

The UK’s offer is driven by our unbeatable high-skill economy, which is already recovering faster in the wake of coronavirus than any other advanced G7 economy. That is due to our successful vaccine roll-out, which demonstrated powerfully why we are a science and tech superpower as we got doses of the UK-developed Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine out into the world in record time.

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, rear left, and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson witness an expanded Sovereign Investment Partnership being signed by Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, chief executive officer and managing director of Mubadala, and Gerry Grimstone, UK Minister for Investment, front right. Photo: Rashed Al Mansoori / Ministry of Presidential Affairs.

We have long succeeded through openness to new opportunities. That is why the UK is the foremost place in Europe to invest in technology and home to the third largest number of tech unicorns in the world, with companies valued at more than a billion dollars, like Revolut and Deliveroo.

We have seen the resilience of our appeal as a global hub for investment, with venture capital investment in UK tech hitting a record high of $15 billion last year, despite the pandemic.

The UAE has made a commitment to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 — the first country in the region to do so.

Natural partners towards a greener world

The UK and the UAE are natural partners in their shared mission for clean growth, all the more so as the world looks ahead to Cop26 in Glasgow later this month.

Together, we can see the industries of the future thrive with deeper collaboration on the UK’s vibrant clean and green industries, from hydrogen to pioneering offshore wind technology to carbon capture.

Our ambitious Ten Point Plan for a Green Revolution can neatly entwine with UAE Next 50 by advancing our joint ambition to accelerate our transition to net zero and create green jobs.

The UK is already the world’s second largest services exporter, and now perfectly placed to be the world’s number one centre for green technology and finance.

I have every confidence the UK and the UAE’s investment relationship will continue to grow and drive sustainable economic growth in the sectors which will define the world’s future.

Published: October 19, 2021, 11:20 AM
OPINION