Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah leads UAE delegation at Belt and Road Forum in Beijing

More than 130 countries and international organisations expected to attend talks on China's ambitious global trade policy

Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, arrived in Beijing on Monday to attend the Belt and Road Forum for International Co-operation. Photo; Wam
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Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, arrived in Beijing on Monday evening to lead a UAE delegation taking part in high-level talks to mark the 10th anniversary of China's flagship belt and road strategy.

Sheikh Saud is attending the third Belt and Road Forum for International Co-operation, which begins on Tuesday, on behalf of President Sheikh Mohamed.

He is joined at the two-day summit by senior Emirati ministers and officials, including Dr Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and Cop28 President-designate; Sheikh Salem Al Qassimi, Minister of Culture and Youth; Dr Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, Ahmad Al Falasi, Minister of Education; and Hussain Al Hammadi, UAE Ambassador to China.

Representatives of more than 130 countries and several international organisations will come together to discuss topics, including green development, connectivity and the digital economy.

A number of forums will be staged during the event, focusing on trade links, intercultural exchange and maritime co-operation.

Chinese President Xi Jinping's signature policy combines a land "economic belt" and a "maritime silk road" to link China with South-East, South and Central Asia, the Arabian Gulf, North Africa and then Europe.

The UAE is primed to play a role in the development of the global infrastructure project.

In 2019, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, announced that deals worth $3.4 billion (Dh12.49bn) had been agreed between the Emirates and China to bolster economic ties between the nations.

He said that China would invest $2.4bn to create a storage and shipping station in an area spanning 5.57 million square metres in Jebel Ali to export Chinese goods all over the world.

Sheikh Mohammed said a further $1bn would be spent on setting up a major food project in Dubai, which would involve importing, processing and packaging agricultural, fishery and animal products for global export.

This week's forum aims to strengthen international partnerships and will seek to address pressing global challenges such as climate change, poverty and health care.

A series of trade agreements are expected to be signed between participating countries during the event.

Updated: October 17, 2023, 1:10 PM