Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba announced on April 15th that the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, will meet with President Barack Obama at the White House next Monday, April 20th. Their discussion will center on both nation’s commitment to regional security in the Middle East and their joint efforts to fight violent extremism. The White House stated that the agenda would also include Yemen, preventing Iran from producing nuclear weapons and discussions centering around possible solutions to the conflict in Libya and Syria. UAE Foreign Minister and Deputy National Security Advisor will accompany Sheikh Mohamed on his visit to Washington, which will also include meetings with senior US administration officials and Congressional leaders.
The UAE and US have a history of common values and shared interests and their strong relationship continues to grow in the areas of defense, economy, and culture. The UAE fights terrorism and extremism in the region and beyond and their cooperation with the United States includes a range of defense and intelligence initiatives. Both the UAE and US work closely to maintain security and stability in the Middle East and collaborate to fight groups such as ISIS who threaten worldwide peace and prosperity
Security and stability are not the only goals the two nations share. The UAE has one of the world’s fastest growing economies making it a huge partner with the United States in world development and trade. In fact, the UAE is the single largest export market in Middle East for the US; in 2012 alone, the United States exported $22 million goods directly into the UAE. More impressively, the UAE has held this distinction of largest export market in the Middle East for four consecutive years.
Not only has the business relationship grown between the UAE and the USA, there has also been growth in the social and cultural sectors. US higher education institutions, including New York University and the Guggenheim Museum, are working closely with a range of educational and cultural organizations in the UAE, establishing several satellite institutions.
In recent months UAE Embassy partnered with the Meridian Center for Cultural Diplomacy to bring an exhibit of Emirati art to the United States called Past Forward: Contemporary Art from the Emirates. The exhibition is the largest display of art from the UAE in the United States and proudly features over 25 different artists from all seven Emirates.
Considering the UAE and United States’ strong relationship as allies on the political, economic, and cultural front, Sheikh Mohamed’s visit stands to deepen the already immense mutual respect and understanding that our two nations share. There is much work to be done on the global stage, but through collaborative efforts between forward thinking nations such as the UAE and US, positive change can be affected.