The International Trade Council (ITC) recognizes the commencement of negotiations between Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA). This decision underscores the UAE's continued commitment to fostering robust bilateral trade relationships, a pursuit ongoing since 2021.
The proposed agreement will encompass trade in goods and services, investments, and economic cooperation, as reported by Malaysia's trade ministry. This undertaking presents numerous opportunities for increased growth and economic prosperity for both nations.
"The UAE is Malaysia's 17th trade partner globally and the second in the Middle East, accounting for 32% of Malaysia's trade with Arab countries. The UAE is also the first destination for Malaysian merchandise exports to Arab countries," UAE Trade Minister Thani Al Zeyoudi noted.
This promising development follows a high-level visit to Malaysia by the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed Al Nahyan. During the visit, discussions regarding the strengthening of cooperation in energy, particularly clean energy, were held between the UAE's energy minister and Malaysia's natural resources minister.
Trade Minister Zeyoudi acknowledged the considerable growth in bilateral trade and investment between the UAE and Malaysia in recent years. Currently, Malaysian investments in the UAE stand at $150 million, with UAE investments in Malaysia reaching $220 million.
To date, the UAE has signed four CEPAs with India, Israel, Indonesia, and Turkey. It has expressed intentions to sign around 26 such agreements, underscoring its commitment to fostering global trade relations.
The ITC warmly welcomes this development and looks forward to the mutual economic growth and opportunities that this partnership will yield for both Malaysia and the UAE.