We have today celebrated the longstanding and deep friendship between the UK and UAE and agreed an ambitious plan to develop our cooperation still further. Our partnership is built on respect for each other’s sovereignty. Both countries have evolved their systems of governance, over time, to reflect their respective traditions and aspirations for the future. We stand together to combat many of the threats to the security of the wider region. We are strongly committed to maintaining tolerant open, outward-looking societies.
We are partners across the broadest range of areas. Over 100,000 British citizens live in the UAE. British Nationals visiting the UAE make up one of the largest visitor groups. They appreciate the UAE’s vibrant society and culture. Nearly two hundred thousand Emiratis visited the UK last year. We want to support and develop this interchange between our people. In the economic sphere, both the UAE and the UK have taken difficult decisions to ensure economic stability. Both have created environments in which investments thrive and both have invested significantly in each other’s economies.
We collaborate on our mutual defence interests, against external and domestic threats; we are political partners in international fora, where we cooperate together to support the peaceful resolution of conflict. Our partnership as governments is built on our partnership as peoples.
To further strengthen and develop this partnership, we will work together to:
-- Deepen our defence ties by; continuing the development of our joint plans for the security of the UAE and wider Gulf region; increasing our joint exercises and training; and by investing in the British military presence in the UAE.
-- Establish a defence industrial partnership that involves close collaboration around Typhoon and a number of new technologies.
-- Grow UAE investment in UK infrastructure and British investment in the UAE in aerospace, ICT, service ventures, communications, munitions and capability, broadening the industrial and business partnerships between UAE and UK companies, aiding technological development and diversification.
-- Support all these measures by working towards facilitating travel between our two countries.
-- Build on the already substantial exchanges between the UAE and the UK in the field of education.
Cooperate on addressing new challenges in the Middle East and North Africa, as well as pressing global challenges such as climate change.
Promote mutual understanding in both our countries.
(EDITOR’S NOTE: The wording of the above joint communique falls well short of media reports that the UAE will buy the Eurofighter Typhoon.
The Financial Times, for example, said Nov. 6 that the UAE “was interested in buying [up to 60] Typhoon fighter jets,” while Agence France Presse said the UAE “has shown an interest in ordering up to 60 Typhoon Eurofighters to replace ageing French Mirages, the statement said” – even so the statement says no such thing.
In fact, the “defense industrial partnership…around Typhoon” mentioned in the communique falls well short of a commitment to buy the aircraft, and could just as easily be taken to mean that UAE companies will provide maintenance and support for Royal Air Force Typhoons when they deploy to the Gulf.
Nonetheless, Reuters reported Nov. 7 that “Britain has made ‘extremely encouraging’ progress in securing an order from the UAE for 60 Typhoons…a British defence source said on Wednesday.”)