Abu Dhabi crown prince, Putin discuss stronger ties, Syria woes

Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed met with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday in Moscow



Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Tuesday, as part of an official two-day visit.

The two leaders discussed ways to enhance bilateral economic ties and also exchanged views on the latest regional and international developments, official news agency WAM reported.

Sheikh Mohamed said: “Bilateral relations [between the United Arab Emirates and Russia] have grown in recent years, thanks to the support of leaders from both countries who cherish a comprehensive vision for the future of our relations, especially in the areas of economy, industry, trade and investment through empowering competent institutions in both countries to discharge their duties in this respect.”

He noted that the UAE aims to establish “better ties with friendly countries and strengthen co-operation with Russia to build a better future for political, economic, investment, trade and energy relations.”

During the meeting, the two sides also discussed political and security issues, views on counter-terrorism, safeguarding regional peace and security and backing the legitimate government of Yemen.

Sheikh Mohamed and Putin specifically reviewed the efforts being exerted to settle the Syrian conflict and to come up with a solution that ensures the security and stability of the country and the region as well, WAM reported.

Russia supports the government under Syrian President Bashar Al Assad, while the UAE – along with the other Gulf Cooperation Council countries – has called for Assad to step down.

As part of the official visit, Sheikh Mohamed also attended the International Aviation and Space Show, MAKS 2015, on Tuesday.

Russia is seeking more investments from the UAE as it looks to develop its infrastructure and expand its economy.

Even as Sheikh Mohamed’s official visit began, the Kremlin revealed that Russian oil company Rosneft is in talks with Abu Dhabi state firm Mubadala Petroleum to jointly develop two oilfield projects in Siberia, Tass Yuriakh and Verkhnechonskoye.

In 2013, Abu Dhabi announced plans to invest $5bn in Russian infrastructure projects via the state-backed Russian Direct Investment Fund.

The Russian fund also established a $2bn joint fund with Mubadala Development to finance projects in Russia.