The Amazon Summit, held in Brazil this week, served as a framework for the bilateral meeting between a delegation from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Colombia. This Arabian Peninsula country will host COP28, a global gathering in November and December of this year to address the challenges of climate change on an international level.
In the city of Belém, Emirati authorities expressed their interest in investing in clean energy in Colombia, in line with the proposed energy model change advocated by the Petro government.
Investing in climate actions in Colombia
Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, the designated President of COP28 in Dubai, led the Emirati delegation that met with the Colombian delegation in Belém. The Colombian delegation was headed by President Gustavo Petro, Foreign Minister Alvaro Leyva, and Minister of Environment Susana Muhamad.
During the meeting, various topics related to climate action were discussed. In this context, decarbonization of the economy and financing for climate change were essential points of dialogue. Resource mobilization in technology, food security, and innovation in agricultural production were also discussed.
In this context, the Emirati side showed “genuine and renewed interest in investing in Colombia in the field of clean energy.” According to a statement issued by the Colombian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the UAE wants to “work towards securing financing for climate change and advancing the goal of decarbonizing the economy.”
Colombia and United Arab Emirates allied by proposal of the president
This bilateral meeting took place after Gustavo Petro’s intervention at the Amazon Summit. During the summit, the Colombian president passionately advocated for the need for concrete and forceful actions. Among the eight participating countries, he was the leader who put forward the boldest proposals and concrete actions, in a summit that ended with some disappointment in its conclusions. This was the view of the climate change activists who participated in the summit in Brazil.
With these recent steps, the administration of Gustavo Petro continues to promote its proposal in favor of combating climate change. He did so in September 2022 during his notable speech at the United Nations Assembly, as well as before US President Joe Biden. Just a few weeks ago, Petro presented his plan to exchange climate action for external debt with the European Union.
Now, he has done the same at the Belém summit, before his counterparts from Amazonian countries, where he has obtained the support and investment commitment of the United Arab Emirates.