LOS ANGELES, CA – United Arab Emirates (UAE) Consul General Abdulla Alsaboosi traveled to Washington State to meet with local government officials and business leaders, and highlight the robust economic relationship between the state and the UAE. During his stay, the Consul General visited Olympia, Seattle, and Spokane.
While in Olympia, he met with Washington Governor Jay Inslee and exchanged perspectives on the UAE-Washington relationship and possible areas of future collaboration. In addition, the Consul General and Governor Inslee discussed the robust trade ties between the UAE and Washington. Consul General Alsaboosi also met with representatives of the Trade Development Alliance of Greater Seattle, the City of Seattle and the Washington Department of Commerce to discuss business opportunities and economic growth in the UAE.
The UAE is the US’ largest trading partner in the Middle East region, with bilateral trade totaling $24.9 billion in 2014. Washington is the largest exporting state from the US to the UAE. Last year, the state exported more than $3.2 billion to the UAE. These exports mainly included aircraft that were manufactured by Boeing.
At the November 2011 Dubai Air Show, Emirates Airline, the Middle East's largest carrier, placed an order for over 50 Boeing 777s for $18 billion. During the 2013 Dubai Air Show, three major UAE airlines put in an order of $80 billion in aircraft, the largest order in history for both Boeing and the aviation industry.
“Whether through trade or educational exchanges, there are growing ties between the UAE and Washington,” said Consul General Alsaboosi. “As of 2014, the state is the largest merchandise exporter to the UAE, with exports increasing from less than $710 million in 1999 to $3.2 billion in 2014.”
During his visit, Consul General Alsaboosi spoke at the Spokane launch of Past Forward: Contemporary Art from the Emirates, an exhibition of Emirati art that was featured at the Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture in Spokane. The exhibition is complemented by public programming and educational outreach to encourage increased cultural understanding and engagement between the UAE and US. In addition, the public programming and education outreach allows participants to learn more about the UAE’s vibrant cultural history and emerging art scene.
The Consul General’s visit to Washington is part of the Consulate’s ongoing effort to raise awareness among West Coast Americans of the UAE’s role as a reliable partner in the region, and of the increasingly shared values between the UAE and the US. The Consul General plans to continue his official state visits within the US Western Region in the coming months.