Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 29 October 2020

Anwar Gargash: coronavirus will weaken economies

UAE minister of state says region needs to find ways to bolster development model as world reels from effects of pandemic

Dr Anwar Gargash, the UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, aT a meeting in the renovated main hall of the bloc's headquarters in Cairo on March 4, 2020. EPA
Dr Anwar Gargash, the UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, aT a meeting in the renovated main hall of the bloc's headquarters in Cairo on March 4, 2020. EPA

The coronavirus pandemic will necessitate a rethink of global economic models, the UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs said yesterday

Dr Anwar Gargash told a Beirut Institute Summit panel that the regional labour market would be affected by the pandemic.

“The region, like all regions of the world, will be financially and politically weaker and we would be wise to think about our development models,” Dr Gargash told the panel on Zoom.

He said the Gulf governments would be asking “a lot of questions about what constitutes a Gulf rentier state model”.

“We have been for many years trying to escape that model with varying degrees of success but I think this is going to accelerate the necessity for us to find something a little bit more sustainable,” Dr Gargash said.

The system across the region, which employs a large proportion of migrant labour, “will be under consideration”.

“One would have to look at it and see is this model sustainable? Should it be tweaked or not?" he said.

"It is a bit early but I think this is emerging as a major issue.

“This is a period of healing, and healing means we need to look internally and address the impact of this huge pandemic on our policies and on our relations with others."

Updated: May 7, 2020 01:15 AM

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