Germany: An indispensable strategic partner for UAE
HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Abu Dhabi
Germany has proactively dealt with issues such as immigration, asylum, debt-management and investment
Germany-UAE relations are robust and development-oriented. Germany is the fourth largest exporter to the UAE, and the 25th largest recipient of UAE re-exports. The UAE is home to more than 900 German companies and the largest trade partner in the Middle East. Nonetheless, the trade surplus is in Germany's favour to the tune of more than $15 billion. Likewise, German companies significantly contribute to the UAE's ongoing infrastructure projects and play a leading role in the alternative energy sector. The German Business Park, an area designed to house several of the already present companies and their logistical needs, is in the midst of construction in Dubai. This is tantamount to enhanced cooperation between the two countries, as their respective leadership believe in upping their cooperation to the higher orbit.
On the international stage, Germany is the growth engine for Europe. It has led from the front as a crucial player, especially in European affairs, and the only country to keep the banner of united Europe flying high, as several member states of the European Union drifted away from the Treaty of Rome in their endeavour to seek more and more local autonomy.
The Brexit episode and the ultra-nationalistic sentiments in Europe was an opportunity for Germany to exhibit its leadership as a consensual player in regional affairs, and Chancellor Angela Merkel didn't fail to campaign for a collective and centralised Europe. The monetary vacuum that is emerging in Europe and the downslide in trade and productivity is a case in point, and Germany was the only country that spoke for a united approach as states drifted at their home fronts.
Its global role, nonetheless, is in transition. Germany is today the voice of the dispossessed, not only in Europe but for many of the crisis-ridden states of the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Germany has proactively dealt with issues such as immigration, asylum, debt-management and investment. Germany was the cathedral at the time of influx of refugees into the continent, and the only country that spoke for the downtrodden's right to life, liberty and well-being. It embraced more than a million refugees and its foreign policy became a beacon light of compassion in the Europe and beyond.
Germany has carved out a strategic axis with the major powers in the region, as well as with the lone super power, the U.S. Berlin's special relationship with Russia and China is harbinger of peace and stability.
Merkel has dealt with Russia in a reconciliatory manner, and acted as a bridge in brokering new vistas of cooperation, whether it is the Syrian impasse or the multi-billion dollars energy projects across the continent. Had it not been the acumen and wise policies of Germany, Europe would have slid into anarchy and chaos with Russia over the regional upheavals and especially the Ukrainian affair.
So is the case with China, the economic superpower by any means. The magnitude of investment, trade and bilateral cooperation has further broadened the conciliatory tone, which has acted as a good omen for global economic revival. Last but not the least, Germany is second to none in the region, and its preferential treatment with Britain and France, as well as Italy, makes it an indispensable strategic partner, despite several odds in their respective domestic chores.
The euro crisis proved beyond doubt that Germany support for single currency was visionary in essence. In the wake of Britain's Brexit vote, it was Germany that gave leadership to the continent, and closely guarded the secret of monetary union.
The reason was quite simple: Germany is home to entrepreneurs, businessmen, artists, scientists and academicians, and had successfully its nationalistic endeavour while advocating and upholding regional cooperation.
Since World War II, Germany had acted as a state which believes in multilateralism for the collective betterment of all, and had shunned ambitious militaristic aspirations. This is why it has emerged as the central player on the international stage by remaining stable and exhibiting its resilience as the world around it changed.
Berlin has risen to new heights of success, as it believes in diplomacy and reconciliation. It is a responsible power-broker, region-wise and internationally, and has acted as a catalyst in ventures of growth, productivity and industrial collaboration. Its gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to grow by two per cent points, impacting positivity on the global economic index. Likewise, exports are projected to grow at a rate of five per cent.
Germany believes in free trade, and in bailing out ailing economies of the region and beyond. It has played an instrumental role in heavy industrial projects worldwide, and in lifting several ailing economies of the developing countries.
While Germany has doubled up on the path of industrialisation and productivity, it has successfully shunned the American doctrine of protectionism. Thus, the modus operandi is freehold competition and market buoyancy.
Germany is the 'strong man' of Europe, and one of its finest credentials is that its unemployment rate is lowest in the 28-member European Union. Likewise, people from other countries are not treated as 'others', and sooner than later they become body politic of Germany. This is due to its vibrancy and visionary policies as an emerging great power.
Sheikh Mohamed looks on as German Chancellor Angela Merkel talks to a student from German International School
UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan (right) with German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel