Thu 26-04-2018 09:54 AM
ABU DHABI, 26th April, 2018 (WAM) -- The United Arab Emirates is 'a valued partner' of Holland and the two countries share both values and an agenda in fields such as counter-terrorism and cross-border crime, the Dutch ambassador, Frank Mollen, said here last night.
Speaking at the annual King's Day reception, marking the birthday of the Dutch monarch, King Willem-Alexander, Mollen noted that the events of the last year showed that "many of the current international issues are complex and difficult to resolve. From violent extremism to migration, from climate change to natural disasters, our global world still provides us with more than enough challenges. And both our countries have had their respective shares of these challenges to carry. "
"The way forward can only be through cooperation," he added, noting that the UAE has been "a valued partner" since diplomatic relations were established in 1972, during the early days of the leadership of the late Sheikh Zayed.
"The partnership between our countries is not only based on our strong economic relationship, or our shared agenda in fields such as counterterrorism, non-proliferation or fighting cross-border crime," Mollen said.
"We also share many values: religious and societal tolerance, gender equality, sustainability, good governance, assistance to those who are less fortunate than we are, as well as the constant urge to innovate and to produce the best: all these values unite us and promote our friendship," the ambassador added.
Looking ahead, Mollen said that the leading theme in the Dutch pavilion at the EXPO 2020 in Dubai, will be the interlinkages between water, food and energy, summarising these as "no food without water, no water without energy and no future without sustainable sources of energy. "
With nearly one third of Holland lying below sea level, the management of water is part of the DNA of the Dutch, he suggested.
"For the UAE too," he added, "water is also a vital part of its livelihood ... Our countries may come from opposing ends of the water spectrum, with an abundance of water in my country and a shortage here, but we have a lot to offer each other in this field, and we find each other in our mutual quest for innovative, sustainable solutions to the problems of our times."
Recalling that the UAE and Holland last year signed a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding on Innovation, providing the basis for collaboration on various innovative technologies, Mollen concluded by expressing optimism about the future growth in relations.
The reception was attended by Ahmed Sari Al Mazrouei, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, MoFAIC, ambassadors, diplomats, members of the Dutch community and other guests.