Khaldoon Al Mubarak
Climate change wlll require a more deliberate set of coordinated action from governments, says Mubadala chief. Image Credit: Bloomberg

Abu Dhabi: Committing more investments in non-oil sectors can help the UAE government double GDP and ‘supercharge economic growth’, said Mubadala Investment Co-Chief Khaldoon Al Mubarak at an industry gathering. The wealth fund chief said these investments could be into life sciences, clean energy, aerospace, and healthcare to ensure a sustainable future.

At the global level, however, the biggest impediment to growth is a lack of collective action to address common challenges, especially the world’s biggest threat – the climate crisis. Al Mubarak urged audiences at the Investopia Conference in Abu Dhabi, which began today (March 2), to wake up to the reality that climate change is the most significant threat to humanity.

“Future generations would be living in a world that is very different. We must prepare ourselves and our children for what’s to come.”

As a solution to this challenge, Al Mubarak said the government of UAE is focused on fostering cooperation and solving problems. “And this why we are well underway with plans to supercharge economic growth,” said Al Mubarak.

Taking on complex issues

The goal is to double UAE’s GDP through non-oil sources, and that’s also why the UAE continues to work with entrepreneurs, innovators and investors to work in promising and challenging sectors such as space research, AI, healthcare, and sustainable finance, said Al Mubarak.

The UAE’s GDP grew 7.6 per cent in 2022, and non-oil foreign trade achieved record growth rates last, reaching Dh2 trillion plus, with a growth rate of 17 per cent compared to 2021. Al Mubarak said UAE’s initiatives - such as the Mission to Mars, the Abraham Accords, and breakthrough CEPA deals with India, Indonesia and Israel - are examples of how collaboration can help overcome complex problems.

Al Mubarak said: “Disruption can accelerate finding solutions to the most urgent problems. Our leadership believes that overreliance on one commodity (oil) can lead to failure. Today, we are growing faster than any country investing in the energy transition.”

The Mubadala chief said, “When we launched Masdar 12 years ago, questions were raised – ‘Why would a hydrocarbons-rich country invest in clean energy’. Our leadership believes that climate change is an existential threat. We need sustainable growth for the sake of our children and grandchildren.”