Interview with the Director of Economic Relations, Trade and Development Cooperation Directorate & The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia

In participation of the upcoming World Expo Dubai 2020, Latvia shall utilize the platform as an opportunity for engaging in business opportunities in the region to develop cooperation and expand business relations between both countries.

Juris Štālmeistars, Director of Economic Relations, Trade and Development Cooperation Directorate & The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia, commented, “Looking at the statistics, the UAE is the highest and most important trade partner among the countries of the gulf. So we are exporting a lot more than importing, taking into account also the demand for the food, creating the products and others for the UAE and the rest of the Gulf region.”

He continued, “We are one of the top producers for wi-fi routers, we are also one of the global leaders of plywood provider, producing LNG tankers in Japan, and high tech materials for car industries. So we are very active, since we have a lot of very competitive producers and exporters.”

Latvia is determined to develop its ambition not just in the government sector but also combining academics and business with one common objective towards a more data-driven nation. This gives the country n opportunity to use those advantages to the Fourth Industrial Revolution to provide fast development in IT infrastructure and technologies in a way that the country can benefit from.

Štālmeistars, said, “Although we are a small country, we are coming up with innovative ways to be one of the biggest competitors in the global market by researching what would be our niche product, identifying main areas where we have an excellent basis for development.”

A visit from the Latvian President, Raimonds Vējonis, to the United Arab Emirates marked a very important occasion, its political message has strengthened the relations between the two countries. Since then, there has been an increase in exchange of businesses from the officials.

Delegates from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Economy of UAE has recently paid an official visit to Latvia. The representatives discussed prospects on the state of bilateral relations to finalize procedures which was later followed by the Joint Committee of economic cooperation to further deliberate on business affairs and bilateral investment protection agreements.

“Roughly two months ago, we have held negotiations in Riga and we are working on concluding it. We also have two very important economic agreement, Double Fixation Convention and Investment Protection and Promotion Agreement in order to provide business with a clear and solid legal basis with exchange of visits, marketing each other, and raising brand awareness. This is our ultimate goal for our embassy in Abu Dhabi,” Štālmeistars added.

The agreement shall highlight the potential area of cooperation and addressing obstacles that may be faced. Latvia continues to support the open trade, the liberal investment policy, providing a lot of opportunities to be the hub for transportation and technologies which distinguishes them from other countries in the European region.

“We see our future serving 740 million people in the market, which is Europe. Although we may come across obstacles due to certain conflicts, we are positive we can overcome them, and that would be an important element and interest for other countries around the world to do business via Latvia, via Baltic region and serving the regional market,” concluded Štālmeistars.