France in UAE renewable and hydrogen tie-up

French finance minister Bruno Le Maire said over the weekend that France will work with the United Arab Emirates on new projects in the energy sector including renewables and hydrogen fuel.

“Reaching zero carbon emissions by 2050 is an important goal, and we want to work with the UAE on this fight on climate change,” Le Maire told reporters in Abu Dhabi.

The minister called for economic and investment cooperation as France’s economy rebounds from the coronavirus pandemic, and he mentioned investments in new supply chains as one reason for his visit to the Gulf country.

“It’s time to give new impetus to economic cooperation between our countries,” he said.

Le Maire was scheduled to meet the heads of Abu Dhabi state funds ADQ and Mubadala, as well as state oil company ADNOC.

The association with the UAE comes as the wider region continues to make strides along the climate risks and renewables path.

Last month, for example, Saudi Arabia revealed it has set a target to become net carbon zero by 2060.

In a speech to the Saudi Green Initiative forum in Riyadh the Kingdom’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said it is aiming to achieve net carbon neutrality by 2060.

The move comes as the country also said it planned to become a world leader in the creation of hydrogen.

The Crown Prince said Saudi Arabia, currently the world’s biggest oil exporter,  has targeted a plan which will see it reduce carbon emissions by 278 million tons per year by 2030, with the adoption of the Carbon Circular Economy, based on zero waste, will help reach the target.

He added the Kingdom is to plant 450 million trees and reenergise 8 million hectares of degraded lands by 2030, and a commitment to delivering a further reduction of 200 million tons of carbon emissions with additional initiatives which will be revealed in the future.

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