The United Arab Emirates is participating in dispute adjudication proceedings through the World Trade Organisation Dispute Settlement Body during meetings to be convened from August 21st to 23rd, in the presence of various states interested in the matter.
Representing the UAE is a delegation led by Minister of State for Financial Affairs Obaid bin Humaid Al Tayer and various other parties.
The UAE affirms that the action and measures in question were intended to safeguard national security as a result of Qatar’s support for extremism and harboring of extremists, in addition to its sustained intervention in the internal affairs of neighbouring countries. These concerns prompted the UAE and other nations to sever diplomatic ties with Qatar in June 2017. The continued financing of extremism by Qatar directly undermines the security of the region and that of its inhabitants, as well as regional stability and development.
All actions taken by the UAE in this regard comply with international law and WTO regulations, wherein Article XXI of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and equivalent provisions in other relevant WTO agreements state that the trade agreement between any two nations must not be construed “to prevent any contracting party from taking any action which it considers necessary for the protection of its essential security interests.”
A spokesperson for the UAE Mission in Geneva said, “The UAE is a firm supporter of the WTO and was one of the first countries to join the organisation. The UAE regrets that Qatar is asking the WTO to adjudicate as a trade issue what is actually a serious diplomatic dispute. It was incumbent upon Qatar to abide by its commitments, including those made as part of the Riyadh Agreement and its supplementary covenants, instead of lodging cases before international organisations.”