Germany and the United Arab Emirates maintain extensive diplomatic relations. The strategic partnership that was agreed in 2004 is evidence of this. To further strengthen their ties, both countries signed a joint declaration of intent on the occasion of the visit to Berlin by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in June 2019. Both foreign ministries have also conducted regular political consultations since January 2009.
The UAE are Germany’s most important trading partner in the region. After Turkey and on a par with Saudi Arabia, the UAE are Germany’s most important export market in the Near and Middle East and North Africa, despite a decline in German exports since 2015 (2018: 8.3 billion euros). Germany’s main exports to the UAE are aircraft, cars, machinery, electrical goods and chemical products. In 2018, German imports totalled approximately 1.2 billion euros. These are mainly aluminium and petrochemical products (no crude oil). The German Emirati Joint Council for Industry and Commerce, which was founded in 2009, supports bilateral trade.
Bilateral cultural cooperation is extensive. The Goethe-Institut has operated a regional office in Abu Dhabi since 2006 and a language training centre in Dubаi since 2007. The German National Tourist Board has had an office in Dubai since 2004. There are 15 university partnerships between universities and academic institutions in the two countries. There are officially recognised German schools abroad in Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Dubai. Since 2011 and 2012, pupils can earn the German International Abitur in Abu Dhabi and Dubаi, respectively, and since the 2014/15 academic year these schools also offer the Multilingual International Baccalaureate (IB).
In Berlin in late April 2013, the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, the Sharjah Museums Department (encompassing 16 museums) and the Goethe-Institut signed a declaration of intent on long-term cooperation. March 2019 saw the launch of cooperation in the film sphere between the Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation (ADMAF) and the Filmakademie Baden‑Württemberg in Ludwigsburg.