UAE launches new Trade-Sustain-AI initiative to rewrite future of trade

Abu Dhabi: The UAE has launched a new initiative designed to combine the transformative power of technology with the sustainability and inclusivity of global trade during the TradeTech Forum, which is taking place in parallel to the 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13) of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The ‘Trade-Sustain-AI’ initiative seeks to leverage the rapidly advancing power of artificial intelligence in supply chains to boost the contribution of global trade to the battle against climate change.

It has identified a number of ways it can make an immediate impact, including optimising shipping routes to reduce fuel consumption and carbon emissions; improving logistics operations such as inventory management and freight movements; developing climate-resilient trade infrastructure and forecasting extreme weather events; and improving traceability and transparency in global supply chains, ensuring visibility into the sustainability of traded goods.

The ‘Trade-Sustain-AI’ initiative will work with international organizations, governments and industry leaders to (among other things): produce comprehensive reports to explore the convergence of AI, global trade and sustainability; arrange annual symposiums bringing together prominent AI, sustainability and trade experts to exchange ideas, knowledge and experiences; develop a global research network on trade, climate and AI issues; and develop an international alliance between ministers from key global trading hubs that will work with leading CEOs to propose future-proof regulation for the use of AI in trade.

Based in the UAE, the program has already confirmed several major partners, including ADIA Lab, Core42, Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI) and Maqta Gateway – AD Ports Group’s digital arm. Additional partners are set to be included into the initiative over time.

Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade and MC13 Chair, said the announcements underline the UAE’s commitment to not only championing the development of TradeTech tools but the overarching regulatory frameworks that will enable their global deployment.

“By embracing technology such as AI, we have the opportunity to redefine the future of trade, making it more efficient, more transparent and more sustainable. These initiatives are crucial in enabling us to fully leverage the power of AI in global supply chains, with technological development working in parallel to regulatory oversight to ensure broad adoption and interoperability. It’s essential that the benefits of advanced technology are shared equally – and that means ensuring the tools are not only available but fully accessible for the benefit of all nations.”

The UAE is becoming a prominent champion of the use of technology in trade. In January 2023, in partnership with the World Economic Forum (WEF), the UAE launched the TradeTech Global Initiative to promote the widespread adoption of emerging technologies in global supply chain. The inaugural TradeTech Forum, one of the initiative’s core elements, is taking place in parallel to the Ministerial Conference on February 27.

(With inputs from ANI/WAM)


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