Abraham Accords is not history, it is the future: Dr Ali Al Nuami

Dubai - The UAE and Israel normalised ties after the signing Abraham Accords in September last year.


Suneeti Ahuja Kohli

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Published: Wed 2 Jun 2021, 7:03 PM

Abraham Accords is not history, it is the future. It is not about any two countries, but for the whole region, said Dr Ali Al Nuami, Member, UAE Federal National Council for the Emirates of Abu Dhabi and Chairman Defence Affairs Interior & Foreign Affairs Committee, at the Global Investment Forum 2021 organised by Khaleej Times in Dubai on Wednesday.

“This is an agreement that shows how to counter hate and intolerance. In the UAE, we understand that terrorism and extremism are not a threat to one country or a region. It is a threat to all of us, the whole world. No single nation can counter it alone,” said Dr Al Nuami.

Similar sentiments were echoed by Eitan Naeh, Israeli Ambassador to the UAE. The UAE and Israel’s relationship will withstand any challenges because the two countries enjoy support that is based on long-term vision and strategic needs, said the Israeli Ambassador to the UAE.

“I think the relationship between Israel and the UAE is a consensus in Israel. It doesn’t matter which government is in force in Israel, who is the Prime Minister or the foreign minister. This relationship has got very wide public support in Israel and we saw around 85,000 Israelis visiting Dubai when the flights were launched last year, which proves this,” said Naeh.

Israel and the UAE have recently signed a double-taxation agreement and also announced opening of an Israeli trade office in Abu Dhabi soon. “I hope that in the next few days we will be able to see more agreements signed, ratified, and come into force. I am excited to see more B2B exchanges between Israelis and Emiratis. I am looking forward to see Emiratis meeting Israelis in Israel, when flights resume.”

The UAE and Israel normalised ties after the signing Abraham Accords in September last year. Since then, the countries have been building trade ties and cultural bridges between the Arabs and Jews. “It is all about education. Before signing the Abraham Accords, we first prepared our people, we educated them. We talked about peace and why it is important for prosperity of all,” said Dr Al Nuami. “We should speak one language, the language of peace. There should not be war. This is my message to politicians in our region. You say you want peace. You say you are willing to sign peace agreements. But you do not prepare the ground for peace. For peace, you must first change narrative among young people, change narratives,” he said.

Since the signing of Abraham Accords between the UAE, Bahrain, and Israel, two more countries in the region have normalised ties with Israel.

The UAE and Israel are connected via regular flights, which however, have been temporarily reduced due to the pandemic and other reasons.

Talking about the way forward, Israeli Ambassador to the UAE said, “It’s really about continuing to lay the foundations that will allow the private sector to flourish and to corporate. We are keen to see more Israelis coming here to the UAE, and also for the Emiratis to be able to go to Israel when the country opens up its borders and lifts the Covid restrictions. I think Emiratis meeting Israelis in Israel is something that I am looking forward to.”

In the first five months since the peace treaty, the two countries have conducted around $280 million in bilateral trade, while the UAE has attracted around 130,000 tourists during the period.

This partnership is expected to unlock mutual trade opportunities for both countries, propelling bilateral trade in the medium-term to anywhere between $4 billion and $6.5 billion, equivalent to about one per cent to 1.5 per cent of each country’s GDP.


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