(MENAFN- Emirates News Agency (WAM))
ROME, 8th June, 2023 (WAM) -- A workshop on ways to strengthen Italy-UAE cooperation gathered high government officials from both countries as well as academics and experts. The event, organised by the Italian Think Tank Med-Or, discussed ways to improve cooperation on issues of crucial importance for the two countries, namely the current political situation in Libya and the Horn of Africa, energy transition, as well as future cultural relations between Italy and the Arab world.
Marco Minniti, Chairman of Med-Or foundation and former Italian Interior Minister, stressed in his opening remarks on the leading role the UAE has been playing in the Mediterranean region and beyond for more than15 years. He reminded the audience of its decisive participation in the fight against terrorism affirming that“without the alliance with the UAE, the West would not have defeated ISIS”. He added that the West should be grateful to the United Arab Emirates, which was also the first Arab state to participate in the NATO mission in Afghanistan.
Abdulrahman Al Neyadi, Director of Policy Planning at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, spoke of the outstanding bilateral relations between the UAE and Italy and the importance of strengthening relations in all fields. Events such as this workshop are important to exchange views and find ways to enhance cooperation, he added.
In his intervention about the political situation in the Middle East, Al Neyadi highlighted the deep conviction of the UAE that building bridges through dialogue, cooperation and diplomacy is the best way to achieve peace and stability in the region and beyond.
Experts and officials in the panel on Libya voiced their concern about the little progress the UN efforts to unify the country through elections is making.
Sharif Al Olama, Under-Secretary for Energy and Petroleum Affairs at the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, made the opening remarks in the session on Energy Transition. He highlighted the UAE's commitment since the 1970s to energy transition and its uninterrupted investments in renewable energy. He quoted President His Highness Sheikh Mohamad bin Zayed Al Nahyan who declared“we will celebrate the moment” when in 50 years, the UAE will "ship its last barrel of oil".
The last session tackled the future cooperation between Italy and the Arab world through institutional, cultural and religious dialogue. It stressed on "the need to understand and respect cultural differences”, as Dr. Mohammad Baharoon, Director-General of the Dubai Public Policy Research Centre, remarked.
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