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The President Holds Summit with Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan

By   /   March 11, 2015  /   No Comments

The President Holds Summit with Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan

President Park Geun-hye, who is in the United Arab Emirates, the third destination of her Middle East tour, and Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan held a summit and attended an official luncheon today from 12:00 to 1:35 in the afternoon following an official welcoming ceremony. They discussed ways to enhance substantive cooperation in a variety of areas, including energy, nuclear power plants, construction and plant engineering, healthcare and medical services, agriculture and halal foods, information security and national defense. They also exchanged in-depth views on the current situation on the Korean Peninsula and in the Middle East as well as cooperation in addressing global issues.
President Park said that there were only three countries, including the UAE, which she had visited twice since her inauguration. This, she continued, demonstrated well that Korea and the UAE were in a true strategic partnership. She also said it was very meaningful for the two countries to continue to develop relations as valuable partners not only in energy and construction cooperation but also in other higher value-added areas. The Crown Prince responded by saying that he took great pride in the relationship with Korea and that bilateral relations were crucial and had great potential for further growth. He pledged to make tireless efforts to promote strategic cooperative ties with Korea.
President Park said she was also grateful to him for providing interest and support for Korean businesses to take part in UAE oilfield development projects. She went on to express the hope that an MOU signed this time between the national oil corporations of the two countries on technological cooperation for oilfield development would make enormous contributions to improving the productivity of the three oilfields currently under joint development.
President Park recalled a past remark by the Crown Prince referring to how the construction of the Barakah nuclear power plant was regarded as an improbable project in the desert and said that it had become an exemplary starting point for the two countries to work together looking to the next 100 years. She went on to say that every effort would be made to build the safest nuclear power plant with high performance. She expressed the hope that the two nations would be able to work together more vibrantly in other nuclear-related service sectors as well, including the operation and maintenance of nuclear power plants.
President Park noted that the two countries have built solid trust over a long period of time through plant construction projects. She asked for the UAE’s continued interest so that Korean companies would be able to participate in key projects in the country, including railways, urban metro systems and the 2020 Dubai Expo.
The Crown Prince said Korean businesses had a good reputation, including their advanced technology, so much so that his Government had no other choice but to pick them as project partners even without his support.
Noting that the opening of a health promotion center by the UAE-based VPS Healthcare Group in cooperation with Seoul St. Mary’s Hospital, which the Crown Prince visited last year, was a significant outcome, the President said it was expected that many people in neighboring countries would also use the center. The President continued that dispatching Korean medical personnel to the UAE would make tangible contributions to deepening cooperation in healthcare and medical services between the two nations. If the medical licenses of Korean doctors and nurses were upgraded in the UAE to Tier 1 from Tier 2 as early as possible, the President said, it could help them make greater contributions to the health of the people of the UAE.
In reply, the Crown Prince said he had every confidence in Korean healthcare, adding that Korea`s advancement in this field remained unparalleled in the world. He went on to say that the UAE patients he had met in a Korean hospital in the past had looked happier than those in hospitals elsewhere. He also said that he would welcome an increasing number of Korean medical workers entering his country.
President Park said that significant synergy would be generated by combining Korea`s technology with the UAE`s business networks and finances for the joint entry into other nations in the Middle East, Africa and Southeast Asia, and the Crown Prince expressed his agreement.
The President next expressed her appreciation to the UAE Government for joining forces with the international community to deter North Korea`s provocations with a keen interest in the matter of nonproliferation and for its continued support for the international community`s unified efforts to send strong messages to the North.
Next, Crown Prince Mohammed expressed satisfaction with bilateral defense cooperation, to which President Park replied that cooperation in defense was especially difficult without trust. The President also thanked Crown Prince Mohammed for his attention to the Ahk Special Forces Unit from Korea, including his efforts to improve the facilities at the Ahk base. She emphasized that Korea and the UAE, on the basis of close cooperation in defense, could expand mutually beneficial cooperation in the defense industry as well, including joint development and investment and technological cooperation.
President Park also raised the issue of cyber threats, describing their increasing seriousness as a phenomenon transcending national borders and stressing the importance of coordination among countries to formulate an effective response. Highlighting the technological expertise accrued by Korea in cyber defense, the President said that bilateral cooperation in this field would make an effective response possible. Crown Prince Mohammed expressed his full agreement, mentioning the serious cyber threats facing the UAE and stressing his desire to cooperate with Korea in this regard, and the two leaders agreed to look into the prospects.
On the topic of water, President Park noted the UAE Government’s diligent efforts to address water issues affecting the international community and asked for its active participation at the World Water Forum in Korea in April. Crown Prince Mohammed said that water was an extremely important issue and said the UAE would do its part to ensure the success of the Forum. The two leaders also agreed to explore ways to address the water crisis together through such measures as technological cooperation.
After the summit, the two leaders looked on during a signing ceremony for six agreements expected to expand the scope of cooperation in practical ways: an MOU on the creation of a Korean Cultural Center in the UAE, an MOU on joint entry by businesses into third countries, an MOU on joint nuclear energy projects in third countries, an MOU on halal foods, an MOU on cooperation in agriculture and a customs mutual assistance agreement.
Today’s Korea-UAE summit was the third since President Park’s inauguration. Within the framework of the Korean Government’s policy of strengthening diplomacy toward the Middle East, it is expected to serve as an important opportunity to reinforce the strategic partnership and give greater substance to bilateral cooperation.

The President Visits Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan Mosque

President Park Geun-hye made a visit to Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in the afternoon and paid tribute at the tomb of UAE President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. The official name of the Mosque/Tomb site is Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan Mosque after the late President. The Mosque is the third largest of its kind in the Gulf region following those in Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia. The size of five football fields, it can accommodate more than 40,000 worshippers at the same time.
The former President, the father of the incumbent President of the UAE Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, established the United Arab Emirates in 1971 by uniting seven emirates, including Abu Dhabi. He served as the first President of the UAE until his death in November 2014, carrying out modernization and open-door policies with a great amount of oil money. He is revered as the father of the UAE.
President Park’s visit today demonstrated interest in and respect for a leader revered by the people and the ruling family of the UAE and for a place of worship that they hold dear. It is expected to serve as a chance to bring the people of Korea and the UAE closer together.



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