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U.S. -; UAE Hold TIFA Plus Council Meeting

July 05, 2007



Washington, DC – U.S.
Trade Representative Susan Schwab and United Arab Emirates (UAE) Minister of
Commerce and Planning Shaikha Lubna Al-Qasimi and Minister of State for Finance
Mohammed Khalfan bin Khirbash discussed ways to deepen the U.S. –UAE
economic relationship and improve bilateral trade and investment ties in a
meeting June 29th at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.  The
meeting took place under the auspices of the U.S. – UAE Trade
and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) Plus Council, a joint body created
earlier this year.

“Our talks were very productive and we have laid the
groundwork for substantive cooperation in a number of areas including
Intellectual Property, the Digital Economy and in the area of standards” said
Ambassador Schwab.  “I am pleased with the progress made under the TIFA
Plus Council.  Both sides have agreed to a specific work plan under which
the Council will make continued progress on cooperative activities over the next
six months.”

“The UAE is a model within the Middle East of economic
diversity and trade liberalization, and we look forward to improving our
bilateral relationship and working together on the Doha global trade
negotiations” said Ambassador Schwab.  “The constructive meetings between
our officials illustrate our government’s commitment to trade and investment

The TIFA Plus Council meeting was the first meeting
between the U.S. and the UAE trade officials
since both sides announced that it would not be possible to complete FTA
negotiations under the existing Trade Promotion Authority.  The discussions
covered a variety of economic topics and several areas were identified for
enhanced cooperation.  The goal of the TIFA Plus Council meetings is to
build upon the significant progress made in the FTA negotiations and work
towards an eventual resumption of negotiations.

UAE is currently the United
States’ 34th largest goods trading partner with
$13.3 billion in total (two way) goods trade during 2006.  The UAE is
currently the 19th largest goods export market with U.S. exports of
$11.9 billion in 2006 and the 71st largest supplier of goods during the same
period.  Top exports to the UAE in 2006 included:  Aircraft ($5.3
billion), Machinery ($1.7 billion), Vehicles ($1.3 billion) and Electrical
Machinery ($597 million).