Almatrooshi gave a keynote lecture at the University of Havana and the High Studies Institute, on the occasion of the 49th anniversary of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM, in Spanish) establishment on July 4, 1973.
Under the motto “Renewed South-South Cooperation: Relations between the UAE and the Caribbean-A new model of collaboration in a shifting world”, Almatrooshi delved into projects his country is currently conducting in regional nations.
Almatrooshi, who has a Ph.D. in South-South Cooperation, explained such a collaboration is based on the needs and priorities of the Caribbean nations, including energy, which constitutes a global challenge.
Plus, he detailed the UAE has allocated $93 million to renewable clean energy projects in 16 Caribbean nations from 2015 to 2019. Health is another priority as it is one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) outlined by the UN for 2030, in addition to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic in the region.
Regarding health, the UAE donated 27 tons of medical supplies to 16 Caribbean countries in order to fight the pandemic, while supporting hospital rehab plans.
As the Caribbean is a region vulnerable to natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, the UAE has provided a $16 million humanitarian assistance for relief efforts, Almatrooshi recalled.
The ambassador stated education is key to nations´ future and that is why the UAE has been supporting educational, training and technical assistance projects in modest economies with limited access to resources.
As part of his lecture, Almatrooshi claimed Cuba’s medical assistance and collaboration projects to the rest of the world are examples of South-South cooperation.
To a question about what could hinder this collaboration, Almatrooshi replied that bureaucracy sometimes emerges as major obstacle to development.