UAE: Shaping the Global Future of Renewable Energy

WAM ABU DHABI, June 28th, 2013 (WAM): Thanks to the insightful vision of its wise leadership, the United Arab Emirates plays a leading role in today’s renewable energy industry and climate change issues. The UAE’s commitment towards this field was acknowledged when the country was chosen as the permanent headquarters for the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in Abu Dhabi.

Under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the country has become an international platform for cooperation and global debates on renewable energy and climate change topics; the country hosts a series of dedicated conferences and international events including the World Future Energy Summit (WFES), which is held in Abu Dhabi annually.

In 2010, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) established the Directorate of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) within the ministry to better represent the country; the directorate’s establishment was a direct result of the UAE’s winning bid to host IRENA’s permanent headquarters. The DECC aims to promote the UAE’s participation in international negotiations on clean energy, organize and coordinate local efforts on climate change, and protect the country’s interests in relevant negotiations.

This day, Saturday, June 29, marks the fourth anniversary since the UAE was unanimously chosen as the permanent headquarters for IRENA. The decision was made at IRENA’s Second Preparatory Commission session held in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt in June 2009.

The UAE’s Foreign Minister, HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, reiterated the UAE’s commitment as an active partner to both IRENA and the member states in promoting the renewable energy sector’s growth in order to effectively compete in global markets.

H.H Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed said: “The UAE is a supportive international hub for innovation in the field of renewable energy. Thus, we look forward to working with IRENA members to promote the adoption of renewable energy solutions on a large scale in various parts of the world.” “The UAE is committed to innovation in this field, stemming from our firm belief in the bright future that awaits renewable energy resources, which play a vital role in providing electricity to rural areas, and limiting carbon emissions and their repercussions in terms of climate change,” His Highness added.

He expressed his appreciation for the trust bestowed on the UAE, which is exemplified by its designation as the permanent home of IRENA. He affirmed the UAE’s ability to assume such a responsibility and provide strong foundations ensuring action. These efforts are based on constructive dialogue among the parties to achieve real progress, which will benefit all members.

HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan continued: “The world is watching IRENA and hoping to witness its success in finding appropriate solutions that effectively tackle the harmful effects of climate change. We are confident that IRENA will further position itself as an efficient platform to achieve energy security and ensure access for all.” Since Abu Dhabi’s designation as the permanent headquarters for IRENA, the UAE has worked tirelessly to provide necessary resources and capacities to ensure IRENA’s success and support its strategy, goals, and future plans. This is congruent with the UAE’s view that renewable energy is the energy of the future.

The UAE’s winning bid reflects the world’s appreciation and respect for the wise policies and approach adopted by the country’s leadership. It also demonstrates international confidence in the UAE’s renewable energy approach and in its ability to host IRENA’s headquarters with efficiency. Moreover, this victory acknowledges the UAE’s efforts to raise awareness by leading projects and plans on renewable energy.

Furthermore, confirming the UAE as global organization’s permanent home establishes an outstanding position for the country on the international map; the country is seen as a key player in advocating the world’s interests and priorities. It also reflects the most important diplomatic achievement in the UAE’s history, led by UAE Foreign Minister, HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

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