UAE seeks to strengthen cooperation with Serbia
His Excellency Abdullah Al Saleh, undersecretary for Foreign Trade, Ministry of Economy, discussed bilateral trade relations between the UAE and Serbia with His Excellency Željko Serti, president, Serbian Chamber of Commerce and an accompanying trade delegation.
During the meeting that took place at the Ministry of Economy’s offices in Dubai, the two sides discussed Serbia’s invitation to the UAE to participate in the 81st International Agricultural Exhibition that is set to take place in Novi Sad city from May 19 – 22, 2014.
His Excellency Al Saleh reiterated that the bilateral relations between the UAE and the Republic of Serbia had been growing steadily. He pointed out that the Ministry believed that cooperation could be further strengthened in key segments including agriculture, trade and investment.
He said that the volume of non-oil trade between the two countries was on the rise, and that there was significant scope for growth. In 2012, bilateral trade volumes registered US$9.9 million.
His Excellency Al Saleh noted that many UAE-based agricultural and investment companies had already invested in the Republic of Serbia, with several more considering the possibility of entering the European markets through making significant investments in Serbia.
He expected some UAE banks to open branches in Belgrade during 2014-15 while noting that investors from the UAE lacked information on trade and investment opportunities in Serbia and urging the private sector in both countries to step-up their marketing and promotional initiatives through holding seminars, workshops and similar activities in each other’s territories.
His Excellency Al Saleh pointed out that the UAE’s interest in investing in Serbia was evident from the operation of 19 weekly direct flights from the country’s various emirates to the Republic of Serbia. The increased connections are already facilitating business growth from the region in the Republic of Serbia.
Mohammed Nasser Hamdan Al Zaabi, director of the trade promotion department, Ministry of Economy, as well as His Excellency Milos Perisic, acting ambassador of Serbia in Abu Dhabi and Zoran Izetbegovic, advisor and chairman of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, also attended the meeting.