Towards a road map for Emirati-African relations from the perspective of soft power

EPC | 01 Nov 2014

The development of soft power tools and their effective use in the relationship of the United Arab Emirates with African countries, especially sub-Saharan Africa, is both feasible and necessary. It is noted that the strategic position of the Emirates as an important corridor for African transit trade, especially with Asia, is pushing the possibility of building an Emirati-African strategic partnership. Perhaps the priority here will be given to the emerging economic powers in Africa. There are common challenges and benefits between the two parties, as the UAE can provide assistance to African countries in the fields of training and renewable energy projects. The paper provides a vision and a practical road map in order to identify opportunities and obstacles to cooperation between the UAE and African countries in a manner that leads to building a true partnership between the two parties in accordance with the prevailing functional concept in the literature on international relations. Perhaps what distinguishes this new partnership is that it presents an alternative and a third way away from the battles of international rivalry over Africa on the one hand, and it also contributes to supporting the elements of Arab national security, especially in terms of its intersection with Egyptian interests in Africa on the other hand.

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