Strengthening trade cooperation between Malta and the United Arab Emirates was at the top of the agenda during a meeting held between Minister for the Economy and Industry Silvio Schembri and Minister for the Economy of the Emirates Abdalla Bin Touq Al Marri and Minister of State for Trade Thani Al Zeyoudi.
Business opportunities for both countries, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and economic trends around the world were the main topics of discussion. The United Arab Emirates’ ministers said that they look forward to more commercial collaborations, which will attract further investment in both countries. The meeting between the ministers will be followed by other meetings with a technical and political basis in Malta, to implement what has been agreed between Malta and the Emirates.
Minister Schembri held this meeting against the backdrop of the AIBC Summit event in Dubai, which was attended by a large number of delegates from all over the world, to share their ideas and exhibit products and services related to emerging technologies. During his speech, the Minister highlighted the success that Malta has achieved in terms of the digital economy and its sector – a success that has been attributed to the sustaining of a healthy economy, as well as a framework that allows for the best possible use of technology.
Minister Schembri noted that, by virtue of a robust economy, the government was able to offer financial assistance to those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Among them, he mentioned the business loan guarantees, the wage supplement for each business and two rounds of vouchers of €100 for every person over 16 years of age. The news that Malta has achieved herd immunity just a few days ago was well-received by the audience, a fact that bodes well for the Maltese economy and businesses.
The Minister also spoke of the fact that in 2018 Malta was the first jurisdiction in the world to create a regulatory framework for emerging technologies, including blockchain, while in 2019 the national strategy for artificial intelligence was launched, with the aim of making Malta the best launchpad for this same technology by 2030. He also mentioned the launch of the Technology Assurance Sandbox by the Malta Digital Innovation Authority, which aims to guide digital start-ups in the creation of their products and services.
The Maltese Minister announced that, in the coming weeks, the economic vision for the next ten years will be published – a vision which aims to make Malta a fair and successful nation, which encourages and supports continued investment in innovation, research, human resource development, creativity, and the urban environment. “We want to ensure Malta’s future success by emphasizing innovative solutions which place our country as the digital island of the future and among the best economies,” said Minister Schembri.
He said that Malta is open to trade, and its small size offers the ideal environment in which products are tested, even in the early stages, according to internationally recognised standards. The elements which make up the digital economy and infrastructure are consolidated, while the size and position of the country make Malta an attractive and interesting hotspot for successful initiatives, concluded the Minister for the Economy and Industry.
Minister Schembri also had several meetings with foreign investors, who showed interest in investing in our country. Minister Schembri was accompanied by the Maltese Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, Maria Camilleri Calleja.
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