H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, has said that the UAE appreciates Costa Rica's positive stance on issues of global interest, particularly in the field of climate change and environmental protection, and wants to bring its relationship with Costa Rica to exciting new levels.
H.H. Sheikh Abdullah made the remarks, to be published by La Nacion newspaper, on the occasion of his official visit to Costa Rica.
Below is the full text of H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan's comments in full: "My first visit to Costa Rica this week marks an important milestone in the relations between our two countries.
During this visit, I will have the privilege of meeting with President Luis Guillermo Solis, and will be delighted to again hold constructive discussions with Minister of Foreign Affairs, Manuel Gonzalez Sanz, following our meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York last September.
The UAE would like to bring its relationship with Costa Rica to exciting new levels. I believe that the signing of several important bilateral cooperation agreements during this visit, including on Air Services and Political Consultations, will lay the platform for closer ties between our two countries.
On the international stage, the UAE appreciates Costa Rica's positive stance on issues of global interest, particularly in the field of climate change and environmental protection. Costa Rica has been one of the most ambitious and forward thinking countries on the issue of climate change and sustainable development in the international arena. Furthermore, Costa Rica’s protection of its vital ocean and land resources is admired greatly around the world. The pristine Monteverde cloud forest and the Cahuita National Park are key examples of the Costa Rican Government’s foresight and vision in this field.
The UAE also has a strong legacy of environmental stewardship - which was always a central concern of my father, the late Sheikh Zayed, who founded the United Arab Emirates in 1971. It is therefore only natural that we also face today's biggest environmental challenge with the same urgent attention.
Like Costa Rica, the UAE recognises clean energy to be amongst the most promising solutions. Over many years, the UAE has become a major investor in clean energy, both at home and abroad. We have committed US$ 840 million in clean energy aid to fellow developing countries. We are a major investor in a number of international commercial clean energy projects. and we are the proud host country of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
With the historic conclusion of the Paris Agreement in December 2015, now, more than ever, we see clear opportunities to work with like-minded countries such as Costa Rica in this important field.
Beyond the scope of environmental protection and climate change, my visit will also provide an opportunity to discuss efforts to enhance trade relations between the UAE and Costa Rica. Costa Rica's economy is a dynamic one, and I believe that there is significant scope for the UAE’s private sector to invest in a range of fields, including but not limited to tourism, agricultural, and energy.
I am confident that discussions on investment opportunities will make substantial progress, given that a number of UAE national companies hold a strong desire to explore investment opportunities in various sectors of the Costa Rican economy.
I hope this visit will lay the platform for advancing ties between the UAE and Costa Rica, and I am confident that our countries will continue on a path of close cooperation well into the future."