Leaders sign declaration of Arab Latin-American Forum

ABU DHABI: The Global Forum on the Relationships between the Arab World, Latin America and the Caribbean Region was concluded in Abu Dhabi today at the Emirates Palace. The Forum commenced its activities in Abu Dhabi yesterday, 16 December under the patronage of Sheikh Nahyan Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education ‘&’ Scientific Research and Dr. Leonel Fern?ndez, Dominican Republic Former President and President of the FUNGLODE. The Forum joined a total of 120 prominent figures, and sector? and region? specific experts from Latin America and the Arab world.

The Leaders of Forum adopted a joint declaration following the wrap up of the last two sessions held on the second and final day of the event on Strengthening Arab?Latin American educational, academic, scientific and cultural ties, and Building a mutual Arab?Latin American vision on global issues.

In the declaration, the participants firstly thanked the government of the United Arab Emirates, United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) and the Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (FUNGLODE) for their hospitality and leadership in hosting this seminal event. The declaration also had a special mention of Sheikh Nahyan Mubarak Al Nahyan, and Dr. Leonel Ferna?ndez were for their personal leadership and efforts in building stronger ties between Latin America and the Caribbean and the Arab world.

The declaration also identified a special need for the development of dedicated joint financial projects and institutions that catalyze direct investments, develop commercial and business partnerships, and fund various supporting programs, relevant research, and development projects.

The declaration specifically noted the existing private, public-private, bilateral, and multilateral efforts to create stronger Arab-Latin American ties: “Given the ongoing and rapidly expanding dramatic worldwide innovations in global communication, travel, research and development, manufacturing and other industries, and the rapid rise of a global middle class in the developing world, the Arab world and Latin America must seek to develop much stronger direct bilateral, multilateral and regional connections at the public, private, and public-private partnership levels to remain competitive and enhance their positions in the global marketplace and the community of nations.” The forum participants also recommend the immediate creation of a Council on Arab Relations with Latin America and the Caribbean in order to conceptualize, direct and facilitate further development of an Arab-Latin American partnership. The Council will comprise 20 recognized and highly qualified leaders from both regions. Sheikh Nahyan Mubarak Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, will be the Honorary Chairman of the Council. Dr. Leonel Ferna?ndez, former President of the Dominican Republic and President of FUNGLODE, will serve as Council Chair. The Council will organize, coordinate and implement the modalities, mechanisms and structures necessary to execute the vision and the agenda articulated at the Abu Dhabi Forum. The Council will serve as a hub for institutionalizing programs designed to promote an enhanced Arab-Latin American partnership and to bring the two regions closer together at every level.

In conclusion of the Forum, Dr. Ali Rashid Al Noaimi, Vice-Chancellor of United Arab Emirates University, co-organizer of the Abu Dhabi Forum, stressed the role of the cultural dialogue and sustainable development in constructing ties between the Arab World and Latin America. “The Arab World and Latin America both enjoy a rich cultural heritage, and they both strive to reach a rewarding socio-economic development. The UAEU is therefore committed with its peers from the Arab World and Latin America to the fulfillment of these objectives, and will make available all possible resources for this purpose”.

Meanwhile, Francisco Rezek, former Brazilian Minister of Foreign Affairs, highlighted the importance of the alliance of both regions on the international platform. “The cooperation of both regions will definitely help shape the world’s future. We can be a role model of a fruitful global collaboration in all sectors”.