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UAE and Belgium seek to boost economic, commercial cooperation

Bilateral trade stood at $8.7 billion in 2015

Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, UAE Minister of Economy, and Pieter De Crem, Belgian Secretary of State for Foreign Trade, held a round of talks at the UAE Economy Ministry’s headquarters, to discuss means of boosting cooperation, with a focus on small and medium-sized enterprises and innovation.

Al Mansouri applauded the progressive ties between the UAE and Belgium and referred to the huge potential for growing bilateral trade, which stood at $8.7 billion (Dh31 billion) in 2015 and over 6.5 billion during the first nine months of 2016.

He also highlighted opportunities for deepening cooperation in the aviation and tourism sectors, saying the UAE’s airports served 140 million passengers in 2015 and the number is expected to rise to 200 million during the coming five years.

The Belgian Secretary of State for Foreign Trade said his country views UAE as a key partner and is looking forward to strengthening bilateral cooperation in economic and commercial fields.

He underlined the growing interest among Belgian businesses to increase cooperation with UAE and to use the opportunities available here.