South Korea, UAE eye projects worth $6.1bn

President Yoon Suk Yeol and UAE president Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan pose in front of the Korean-built Barakah Nuclear Power Plant (Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy)
South Korean president Yoon Suk-yeol’s state visit to the UAE has resulted in 24 memorandums of understanding covering projects worth an estimated $6.1bn, reports.

The agreements were signed on Sunday at the South Korea–UAE Business Forum held in Abu Dhabi.

The two sides agreed to cooperate on the peaceful use of nuclear, conventional and clean energy, as well as economic investment and defence technology.

The forum was attended by Lee Chang-yang, minister of industry, as well as executives from Samsung, Hyundai and SK Group, among others.

Six agreements in principle were signed in the energy sector. Samsung C&T will partner with UAE renewables specialist Masdar to pursue hydrogen and renewable power projects, and will also work with Abu Dhabi’s national energy company for a power transmission and gas energy project.

Meanwhile, Korea National Oil and Abu Dhabi National Oil agreed on the joint production of low-carbon hydrogen and ammonia and Daehan E&C will provide waste management technology support and build a waste-to-power facility.

Changwon City, the Korea Automobile Research Institute and the Korea Transport Institute signed two agreements on hydrogen mobility and infrastructure supply.

Eight other agreements were signed in new industries including life sciences and the metaverse. Pharmaceutical company Medy-Tox pledged to establish a bio-sciences plant and cloud service provider Megazone agreed to launch integrated digital services in the Middle East.

Finally, seven companies in the smart farm business plan agreed to pursue Saefarm, a start-up that provides an artificial intelligence solution for growing crops based on satellite imagery, and UAE agricultural company Vista Eco Solutions agreed to join the Neom city project.

The conference follows South Korea’s plan to help construction companies to win overseas contracts to the value of $50bn a year (see further reading).

The aim is to promote the country’s construction and engineering industries, which have long suffered stagnation. Advance overseas orders fell from a peak of $72bn in 2010 to $31bn in 2021.

Further reading:

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