Visa-free travel to Japan for UAE citizens forms part of new partnership deal

Delegation from the Emirates is visiting Tokyo to cement 50-year relationship

Dr Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and the UAE's special envoy to Japan, and Yoshimasa Hayashi, Japan's Minister of Foreign Affairs sign the comprehensive strategic partnership agreement. Wam
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Emirati citizens will be able to travel visa-free to Japan under a partnership signed on Wednesday that aims to strengthen bilateral relations.

The strategic agreement aims to encourage more diplomatic, economic and political participation, trade, and investment between the two countries.

It was signed in Tokyo by Dr Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and the UAE's special envoy to Japan, and Yoshimasa Hayashi, Japan's Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Dr Al Jaber said the deal will encourage more tourism, cultural and academic exchanges between the two nations, in addition to encouraging new opportunities for business, trade and investment.

The date of the exemption from entry-visa requirements will be announced in due course, state news agency Wam reported.

The partnership agreement was launched during a meeting on Monday between a UAE delegation, led by Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed, member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council and chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Office, and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.

Details of the agreement were announced in 2018 when Shinzo Abe, prime minister at the time, visited Abu Dhabi.

The main areas of partnership cover co-operation in the political and diplomatic field, including bilateral and multilateral co-operation.

It also includes co-operation in the provision of development and humanitarian assistance, co-operation in the field of economy, trade, energy and industry by strengthening the business environment for trade and investment in all sectors, such as manufacturing and technology, infrastructure, artificial intelligence, healthcare, small and medium enterprises, as well as agriculture, environment and climate change, education, science, technology, defence and security.

Sheikh Khaled also attended an official reception for the Japan-Emirati Friendship Association in Tokyo. He praised the strong economic relations between the UAE and Japan and the role of the Friendship Association in strengthening co-operation between the two countries.

This week's visit has allowed both sides to reflect on economic ties and friendship over the past 50 years, Wam reported.

The UAE has been one of Japan's main suppliers of oil for the past half century, today providing 20 per cent of its oil needs.

The Emirates is also Japan's tenth-largest trading partner globally, according to 2021 statistics. The value of Japanese investments in the Emirates has exceeded $14 billion.

Japan was one of the first countries to establish diplomatic relations with the UAE in 1971.

Updated: September 28, 2022, 4:26 PM