Transcript UAEs Future Food Security Minister Visits New Zealand
Text on screen: The UAE Minister of State for Future Food Security recently visited New Zealand, as part of a sustainability drive to ‘future proof’ the UAE economy.
During her visit, Her Excellency Mariam Al Mehairi sought to identify sustainable food solutions, covering areas such as aquaculture, food science and production.
HE Al Mehairi: New Zealand is one of the countries, which we feel we could learn a lot from each other. So about 90% of our food is imported. Keeping that in mind we need to ensure that the climate change effects and global food demand is on the rise, so with these things coming up in the future we need to be ready and we need to ensure that we have food security not just now but also in future.
Text on screen: The visit takes place against a background of strong trade ties between the two countries, with New Zealand’s total exports of goods and services to the UAE increasing by 47% from 2016 to 2017.
Lesley Kennedy: The UAE is a great trading partner with New Zealand. We produce great food, we produce the technology around great food and we can help them produce great foods. The Crop Calculator work that we’re doing with Plant and Food Research with the Environment Agency Abu Dhabi, that technology is a decision support tool, which enables growers to know how much water their crops actually need.
Text on screen: In the lead-up to Expo 2020 more growth is expected.
HE Al Mehairi: We would really like to become a food hub for New Zealand, creating a kind of New Zealand food city in the UAE would be something really interesting. So you would not only attract traders to come but also people who have technologies and food processing as well. So creating that eco-system in the UAE for New Zealand is something we’re looking into and I think would be a great opportunity for both sides.