Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, the UAE’s minister of economy, and Pieter De Crem, Belgian secretary of state for foreign trade, have held a round of discussions in the UAE to find ways to boost cooperation between the countries.
The focus, according to a report in Gulf News, was on small and medium-sized enterprises and innovation.
Al Mansouri welcomed the progressive ties between the UAE and Belgium, pointing to the enormous potential for growing bilateral trade, which stood at US$8.7bn (€8.2bn) in 2015 and over US$6.5bn (€6.1bn) for the first nine months of 2016.
He also highlighted the opportunities for deepening cooperation in the aviation and tourism sectors, revealing that the UAE’s airports served 140m passengers in 2015. That figure is expected to rise to 200m during the coming five years.
De Crem revealed that Belgium regarded the UAE as a key partner and was looking forward to strengthening bilateral cooperation in economic and commercial fields.