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UAE not impacted by US- Iran sanctions

The reintroduction of US sanctions on Iran will not impact the UAE economy nor will it stop investment or development in the region, His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai has said.

“Tensions in our region is nothing new. It is practically a constant that has existed for 40 years. Despite this, the cycle of construction and development has not stopped and neither have the investments,” he said in an interview with Saudi newspaper Asharq Al Awsat, published yesterday. He did note there was cause for concern, which investors would consider. “Tensions prompt investor concern, but they do not stop their work or their search for opportunities,” Shaikh Mohammad said. “There is no investment without risk. As they say: The greater the risk, the greater the rewards.”

He said that Dubai’s economy is being affected by global changes, but that is because the emirate has an open economy. “I see the impact as part of the vision of the future and expertise derived from constant facts,” he said. “Economy moves in rising and falling cycles. The Dubai and UAE economy has not witnessed negative growth in six years. It has recorded positive growth that has always been higher than global rates. He added that the country’s plan for 2021 is being implemented according to specific timeframes. “With the help of God and our youth, they are likely to be achieved in time,” he said.

Shaikh Mohammad also said the country has not been impacted by America’s policy of protectionism.

“The UAE and Dubai were not affected by American protectionism. The measures do, however, pose major challenges to the global trade system and the globalization. The irony is that the US was a main player in pushing for globalisation. It is now seeking to introduce radical changes to the rules of international trade,” he said, adding that while the US is a major player in global trade, but there are other “important, influential and rising” players. “Our main partners are the European Union, at 22 per cent of our trade worth 1.612 trillion dirhams, Arab countries at 17 per cent, India at 11.5 per cent, China at 10 per cent and Japan at 6.5 per cent. Our trade with the US in 2017 reached 5.5 per cent and was comprised of consumer goods and electronics.”

Regionally, the Vice-President stressed that the UAE “always stands by Saudi Arabia, through thick and thin. Our bilateral ties are bolstered through the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council. The council set a joint vision for a complimentary strategy between the two countries, on the economic, development and military levels, through 44 joint strategic projects. We look forward to building a complementary model that supports the GCC and joint Arab work.”