Mohammed hails South Korea success story

SEOUL — As inspiring as always and as visionary as ever, His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, emphasised here yesterday that a dynamic knowledge-based society is the need of the hour for the UAE and the Arab world.

By Neville Parker (Deputy Editor)

Published: Wed 23 May 2007, 8:39 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 4:27 AM

Speaking in the context of his moving experience as a first-time visitor to this country, Shaikh Mohammed while addressing a Press conference in the South Korean capital added that the newly established Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation, would provide the necessary initiatives and impetus to attain this major objective.

The UAE Vice-President had announced the establishment of this multi-billion dollar initiative at the recent World Economic Forum on the Middle East in Jordan.

Meanwhile, commending South Korea and citing its exemplary achievements, he said, it is worth noting that when it comes to developing their country the Koreans not only undertake major projects in various spheres, they also invest heavily in education and knowledge development. That, in his view, was the secret of South Korea's success story. The UAE which he said is witnessing an economic boom, already has a good relationship with Europe and the US and is now equally keen to strengthen bilateral links with vibrant and fast-track Asian economies as well, such as South Korea.

Speaking at the posh Grand Hyatt hotel on the concluding day of his highly successful two-day state visit, Shaikh Mohammed, more than impressed his select audience. And all it took was a cheerful smile, a quick friendly glance, and a warm gesture of open dialogue.

The distinguished UAE leader was at his inimitable best while fielding a wide range of questions from newspersons and answered promptly in both Arabic and English. He also underlined the fact that the UAE Government gives much weight to transparency and social accountability. “We want our people in the Emirates to know what we do and also why,” he added.

Asked about the UAE's monetary policy and whether or not the government was considering any move to revalue the dirham after the recent weakening of the dollar, he said: “We are still pegged to the dollar. But I will discuss this matter with my government.”

Before he departed, Shaikh Mohammed also underscored the importance of the media and said that the Press was “very important to us in the UAE.” Overjoyed at this mention, several mediapersons took the opportunity for a quick ‘photo-op’ with the popular UAE leader — a memento they will surely treasure for many years to come.

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