By Rafiq Vayani
DUBAI: Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry has announced that it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Rotterdam Partners, the official foreign investment agency for the city of Rotterdam, which paves the way for new avenues of cooperation and knowledge sharing between businesses in Dubai and Rotterdam.
The MoU signing came during a meeting held earlier today at Dubai Chamber’s head office. The high-level meeting was attended by a visiting delegation from the Netherlands headed by H.E. Ahmed Aboutaleb, Mayor of Rotterdam and joined by government officials and representatives from Dutch companies operating in various economic sectors.
The agreement aims to boost cooperation and knowledge sharing in several identified sectors and areas, namely food, water & energy, logistics, supply chain management, healthcare, branding/city marketing, retail/wholesale, manufacturing, infrastructure and environment, with a major focus on collaboration on innovative projects and solutions within the above-mentioned sectors.
Under the terms of the MoU, several business events will be held in Dubai and Netherlands over the next few years that will coincide with delegation visits and focus on the participation of Dutch companies in Expo 2020.
The visiting delegation was received by H.E. Majid Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman of Dubai Chamber and Dubai Chamber officials and directors. The MoU was signed by Mr. Hassan Al Hashemi, Vice President of International Relations, Dubai Chamber; and Mr. Wilbert Lek, Director of Trade & Investment, Rotterdam Partners, in the presence of H.E. Aboutaleb and H.E. Al Ghurair.
Commenting on the strategic agreement, H.E. Ahmed Aboutaleb, Mayor of Rotterdam said: “The search for solutions to global challenges also requires international collaboration, sharing knowledge and natural resources. We have to do it together. For this reason, the governments of The Netherlands and United Arab Emirates signed a MoU on innovation cooperation focusing on Water, Food & Energy, Aerospace & Aviation and Life Science & Health.”
“By uniting water, food, energy and other expertise we look forward to connecting with like-minded partners in the United Arab Emirates,” H.E. Aboutaleb noted. He added that smart cities and smart ports like Rotterdam and Dubai are setting future standards for excellence, in close collaboration and sharing knowledge with citizens, inventors, artists, developers, research and knowledge institutions and companies.
For his part, H.E. Majid Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman of Dubai Chamber said: “The agreement signed between Dubai Chamber and Rotterdam Partners marks the beginning of a strategic partnership that will foster fruitful cooperation and lay the foundation of a strong mutually beneficial relationship. Companies in Dubai stands to benefit from Dutch innovations through technology transfer and joint initiatives,”
Dubai Chamber’s Chairman noted that Dubai offers plenty of competitive advantages and growth opportunities as a global business hub which Dutch companies and startups can leverage to expand their footprint in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.
H.E. Al Ghurair added that the agreement could serve as a catalyst for boosting Dubai-Netherlands’s non-oil trade beyond the $2.8 billion accounted for in 2018, adding Expo 2020 would be prime opportunity to build new bridges between businesses in the two cities.
Following the MoU signing, Dubai Chamber hosted a business matching event in collaboration with the Netherlands’ Consulate in Dubai. The event was attended by 15 Dutch startups that presented their business ventures, concepts and solutions, as well as representatives from Dubai’s business community who are keen to explore business prospects with their Dutch counterparts.