Published On: 9-11-2017

  • French President: Expo 2020 Dubai will be a great occasion to defend our shared values and showcase new perspectives and projects
  • E Al Hashimy: We look forward to seeing a partnership between UAE and France to generate an appetite for sustainable development
  • E. Al Ghurair: This forum will usher in a new chapter in UAE-Franco relations that will focus on strategic cooperation with the aim of achieving common goals and interests
  • High-profile event brought together French and UAE government and business leaders to explore the role of innovation, mobility and sustainability in addressing key challenges

Dubai, UAE: H.E. Emmanuel Macron, President of the Republic of France, reaffirmed his commitment to strengthening political and economic ties between the UAE and France as he addressed delegates at the UAE-France Business Forum in Dubai.

The high-profile forum was organised by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry in cooperation with the French Embassy in the UAE, Business France – the national agency supporting the internationalization of the French economy, and the French Business Council in Dubai. The event saw the participation of ministers, key decision makers, and government and business leaders from the UAE and France.

During his special address, H.E. Macron highlighted the shared values of culture, civilization and economy between the UAE and France. He spoke about the need to “create a new world for the young generation, based on respect, tolerance, and reason,” and emphasized the role of business and education to achieve these goals.  H.E Macron noted that the UAE and France are making great strides in promoting innovation, and building smart cities.

The French President said that Expo 2020 is the beginning of a new phase that will witness new projects and new perspectives. He stated that Expo 2020 will be a great occasion to defend the UAE and France’s shared values, and added that it is extremely important for France to be a part of the mega event, as it aligns with the country’s ambition to “create a new face of France in mobility and energy.”

Touching upon the importance of digitalisation, the French president elaborated on France’s shift toward digitalization which he says will lead the country to become a green and digital economy that will be more inclusive. He reiterated his full support for the UAE’s initiatives in the lead up to Expo 2020 Dubai and beyond.

H.E. Macron and the French delegation were received by H.E. Reem Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General of Expo 2020 Dubai; H.E. Majid Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman of Dubai Chamber; H.E. Hisham Al Shirawi, 2nd Vice Chairman of Dubai Chamber; and H.E. Hamad Buamim, President and CEO of Dubai Chamber.

Addressing H.E. Macron, H.E. Al Hashimy thanked him for his contribution to Expo 2020 Dubai and spoke about the historical collaboration in culture and civilization that the UAE and France have shared. She expressed her hope for Expo 2020 Dubai to deliver on the theme of bringing countries and people together through collaborations and partnerships, in a way that will benefit future generations.

H.E Al Hashimy pointed out that it was no coincidence that the Forum was held at Zayed University – an institution that is named after the UAE’s founding father, who represented values of collaboration, sharing and openness.

“I look forward to seeing a partnership between the two countries, to generate an appetite for sustainable development and strategic cooperation,” H.E. Al Hashimy added.

For his part, H.E. Al Ghurair stated that H.E. Macron’s visit to the UAE and participation in the forum was a testament to France’s strong commitment to bolstering its ties with the UAE.

“I am confident that this important event will usher in a new chapter in UAE-Franco relations that will focus on strategic cooperation between our governments and business communities with the aim of achieving common goals and interests,” H.E. Al Ghurair said.

Dubai Chamber’s Chairman noted that the Forum provided valuable insights on strategic plans that will drive progress in the UAE and France, and added that the countries “share a clear and common vision of building knowledge-based economies that harness innovation and improve the lives of citizens.”

The UAE-France Business Forum was held on November 9th, 2017, at Zayed University. The French President’s participation in the Forum came during an official diplomatic visit to the UAE. He is currently leading a high-level delegation of French government officials and business leaders to the country to meet with key public and private sector stakeholders in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

The Forum also saw the participation of H.E. Benjamin Griveaux, State Secretary to the Minister of the Economy and Finance of France; H.E. Saeed Al Tayer, Managing Director, DEWA; H.E. Mohamad Jameel Al Ramahi, CEO, Masdar; H.E. Mohammed Al Muallem, Senior Vice President & Managing Director, DP World and Chief Executive Officer, JAFZA, UAE; AbdulMohsin Ibrahim Younes, CEO, Rail Agency, RTA, UAE; Jean-Charles Decaux, Co-Chief Executive Officer, JCDecaux –France; Laurence Batlle, Chairwoman, Executive Board for RATP DEV – France; Jean Bernard Lévy, Chairman & CEO, EDF, France; and Isabelle Kocher, CEO, Engie Group – France.