DUBAI, (Pakistan Point News - 26th Oct, 2021) Ministers and senior officials from 16 GCC and Asian states today attended the opening of a high-level regional summit on labour and migration, meeting in person for the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The opening of the Sixth Ministerial Consultation of the Abu Dhabi Dialogue marks the successful conclusion of a two-year UAE Chairmanship of the process that has had to be organised under the challenging conditions of a global pandemic.
In order to keep discussions among Member States going throughout that time period, the UAE had to find creative solutions, including the use of online technology and the development of tailor-made platforms for multilateral meetings. The result has been that, despite the challenges of the pandemic, the UAE has delivered a two-year agenda that has included eleven research papers from a number of distinguished academics and authors, four workshops for senior officials, a global consultation on labour mobility, and an orientation programme for workers in Bangladesh, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka and the UAE.
The summit chaired by Dr Abdulrahman Al Awar, the UAE’s Minister for Human Resources and Emiratisation, will take the opportunity of the meeting to consult with colleagues on a future-focused agenda for GCC-Asia relations that reflects the new economic priorities of the GCC countries.
Leading preparations for the summit, Abdulla Alnuaimi, Assistant Undersecretary for Communications and International Relations said, "This is the first successful post-COVID meeting of GCC and Asian labour ministers, which is a testament to the measures that the UAE has put in place to enable a summit of this type to take place. With Mobility one of Expo’s main themes, we are confident that the agenda will result in a set of outcomes that pave the way for successful collaboration in the years ahead."
The Abu Dhabi Dialogue was established in 2008 as a forum for dialogue and cooperation between Asian countries of labour origin and destination. The ADD consists of eleven Asian labour sending countries, namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam; and seven Asian labour receiving countries: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, as well as Malaysia. Regular observers include international organizations, and private sector and civil society representatives. The permanent secretariat is provided by the United Arab Emirates, which is also the current Chair-in-Office.