UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson in Abu Dhabi amid Ukraine war and energy crisis

British leader will also travel to Riyadh later today

Latest: Boris Johnson — 'We have got to get off Russian hydrocarbons'

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson landed in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday for talks with senior officials over the war in Ukraine and the global energy crisis.

Mr Johnson was greeted at the airport by British ambassador to the UAE Patrick Moody and Dr Anwar Gargash, diplomatic adviser to President Sheikh Khalifa.

He was guided through a guard of honour before travelling across the city to Emirates Palace.

The UK prime minister, who was due to visit Riyadh later in the day, will talk to officials about boosting oil production to ease fuel prices that have rallied as a result of Russia's war in Ukraine, the UK's Press Association agency reported.

Speaking to British media at Emirates Palace hotel, Mr Johnson said: “It is not just a question of looking at the Opec countries and what they can do to increase supply, though that is important. There is also the issue of Emirati investment in UK wind farms, already huge, what more can they do?

“When we look at the dependency the West, in particular, has built up on [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s hydrocarbons, on Putin’s oil and gas, we can see what a mistake that was because he has been able to blackmail the West and hold western economies to ransom. We need independence.”

He said the British government would be setting out the energy strategy next week to include a “massive jump forward on renewables, more nuclear, using our own hydrocarbons more effectively” and sourcing fossil fuels from outside Russia.

Mr Johnson said there is “no way Ukraine is going to join Nato any time soon”.

On Tuesday, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said he acknowledged that Ukraine would not become a Nato member, despite having heard for years that “the door was open".

Any decision on Nato enlargement has to be by unanimous agreement of its members.

“I talked to Volodymyr again yesterday and, of course, I understand what he is saying about Nato and the reality of the position,” Mr Johnson said.

“And everybody has always said — and we have made it clear to Putin — that there is no way Ukraine is going to join Nato any time soon.

“But the decision about the future of Ukraine has got to be for the Ukrainian people, and Volodymyr Zelenskyy is their elected leader and we will back him.

“And the most important thing is that Putin’s aggression, his absolutely barbaric attacks on Ukraine, should stop and they should not be seen to have succeeded, and they won’t succeed.”

Updated: March 16, 2022, 12:04 PM