Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi meets the Ukrainian delegation in Dubai. Image Credit: Supplied

Senior UAE and Ukrainian ministers met in Dubai to discuss a comprehensive trade agreement between the two countries.

Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, held a meeting with Yulia Svyrydenko, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economic Development, Trade and Agriculture of Ukraine, and Taras Kachka, Ukraine’s Deputy Minister of Economic Development, to discuss the establishment of a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA).

The meeting explored strengthening of trade cooperation in areas such as real estate, transportation, energy, agriculture, technology, manufacturing industries and retail trade.

The UAE had announced the launch of preliminary talks to establish a CEPA with Ukraine in December 2022.

Dr. Al Zeyoudi said: “The agreement presents a new roadmap to boost trade exchanges, provide more investment and trade opportunities for the UAE and Ukrainian business communities, and foster cooperation in various economic fields, especially infrastructure, heavy industries, aviation, information technology and food security.

“The two countries boast strategic geographical locations through which the rest of the world can access major markets in Europe, Africa and Asia. Besides, both markets have significant investment capabilities and great economic potential.”

The UAE minister also highlighted the signing of four CEPAs to date - with India, Israel, Indonesia and Turkey.

Yulia Svyrydenko said: “The trade and economic relations between the UAE and Ukraine are founded on fruitful cooperation and they continue to grow in various fields. The partnership will contribute to enhancing the bilateral economic relations and their competitiveness in an unprecedented manner. It will also boost investment exchanges and business partnerships, thus promoting opportunities and enablers for the business communities in both countries.”

The UAE is Ukraine’s second largest GCC trade partner as of 2021, and the non-oil trade between the two countries exceeded Dh1.4 billion in 2022.

The country’s investments in Ukraine totaled $100 million in September 2020, making the UAE the largest Arab investor in Ukraine. Meanwhile, Ukrainian FDI in the UAE reached $84 million in the beginning of 2021, mostly in real estate, retail trade, manufacturing, transportation, warehousing and technology sectors.

The UAE’s investments in Ukraine span many sectors including manufacturing, transportation, storage, gas, retail trade, real estate and agriculture.