Published: 2022-07-19 11:58
Last Updated: 2023-03-28 06:38
France secured promises of new energy supplies from the United Arab Emirates on Monday after talks between President Emmanuel Macron and UAE leader Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan in Paris, reported AFP.
The UAE has emerged as a key partner for Western countries as they scramble for energy deals worldwide to replace imports from sanctions-hit Russia.
Sheikh Mohamed, also known as MBZ, was on his first overseas state visit since taking office in May following the death of his half-brother.
After lunch between the two heads of state, a deal between a French energy company and UAE state oil company was signed "for cooperation in the area of energy supplies."
Macron's aides had said before the meeting that France was eager to secure diesel from the strategic Middle Eastern nation.
"The UAE is keen to support energy security in the world in general and in France in particular," Sheikh Mohamed told Macron, according to Emirati state news agency WAM.
Before the trip, his diplomatic advisor Anwar Gargash had stressed how the UAE was looking to reorient its supplies towards Europe.
"We have sold our oil to the far east for 40 years and now we are directing it toward Europe in this time of crisis," he told reporters.
The UAE president's visit to France came after Joe Biden's first Middle East tour as president, which included a visit to Saudi Arabia for energy talks.
Macron and Biden were overheard talking about energy supplies from the Middle East at a G7 summit at the end of June in Germany.