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In aims of the enrichment of the cultural and creative sector, the UAE and Canada issued a joint statement of cooperation.

The UAE and Canada have issued a joint statement for greater cooperation in the field of cultural and creative sector to enrich the creative economy ecosystem in the two countries. The announcement came at the end of a bilateral meeting held on February 8, 2022, at Ministry of Culture and Youth – Abu Dhabi, between His Excellency Mubarak Al Nakhi, Undersecretary of the UAE Ministry of Culture and Youth and Her Excellency Marcy Grossman, Ambassador of Canada to United Arab Emirates, on behalf of H.E. Joelle Montminy, Senior Assistant Deputy Minister, Cultural Affairs of Canadian Heritage. The joint statement was signed in the presence of her Excellency Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, UAE Minister of Culture and Youth and Canadian Consul General in Dubai and the Northern Emirates H.E. Jean-Phillippe Linteau. 

According to the statement, the UAE and Canada will strengthen collaboration and seek greater exchange of information on regulatory frameworks, policies and best practices in the fields of culture and creativity and build on trade opportunities by fostering partnerships and entrepreneurship opportunities. It also welcomed the outcomes of the World Conference on Creative Economy (WCCE) 2021 hosted in the UAE and its 21 action points towards the development of the global creative economy. 

Commenting on the bilateral meeting, His Excellency Mubarak Al Nakhi said: “It was a pleasure to meet with Her Excellency Marcy Grossman, Ambassador of Canada to the United Arab Emirates. We discussed ways of cooperation to build a robust and sustainable creative economy ecosystem. There’s a lot of scope for learning and exchange of ideas between the two countries in the creative domain, and we will continue to explore further opportunities. The UAE’s CCI sector would like to work closely with Heritage Canada to learn from best practices and policies that Canada has worked on especially in the fields of gaming, immersive technology, film and animation. 

“This joint statement is a first step and the beginning of a long and fruitful relationship between the two countries. We look forward to more such interactions and hope to present more formalized collaboration mechanisms in the future.”

H.E. Marcy Grossman, Ambassador of Canada to the United Arab Emirates added: “I am pleased to see this important milestone for the Canada-UAE relationship especially in light of the UAE’s robust 10-year National Strategy for Cultural and Creative industries. At the recent World Conference on Creative Economy 2021 in Dubai, the UAE Minister of Culture and Youth, Her Excellency Noura Al Kaabi, and I agreed on the important role of creative industries in economic development and that significant room exists to enhance cooperation and business ties between our two countries in various areas, including digital media and audiovisual production. This joint statement builds the momentum for a future visit to the UAE by a Canadian government delegation to further explore our countries’ bilateral cooperation on culture and creativity “ 

The joint statement highlighted some of the potential areas of cooperation between the two countries such as interactive digital media, content creation and production in audiovisual sector, book publishing and performing arts while also seeking to address market barriers or challenges if any. 

As part of the informal agreement both the countries seek to work on legislative and regulatory measures including intellectual property, government support and strategies; digitisation and heritage protection; and inclusion and diversity of voices on digital platforms to represent youth, gender and ethnic diversity. 

The statement also proposed annual meetings between subject and industry experts, entrepreneurs, government officials, agencies and private and public institutions and associations from both sides to share insights about best practices on related topics.

The joint statement, which is not legally binding on the signatory countries, is expected to open further channels of cooperation and opportunities for the cultural and creative sector in both the countries.