Member Participation

United Arab Emirates


The UAE leadership has launched the UAE Vision 2021 strategy which aims to make the UAE among the best countries in the world by the Golden Jubilee of the Union. In order to translate the Vision into reality, its pillars have been mapped into six national priorities which represent the key focus sectors of government action in the coming years and this includes Competitive Knowledge Economy and Sustainable Environment and Infrastructure. Reflecting the UAE Vision 2021, clean energy is core to the UAE’s INDC, which sets a national target to increase clean energy to 24% of the total electricity generation mix by 2021, from under less than 1% today. Advancing innovation and technological breakthroughs is critical to addressing climate change and also aligns with the UAE’s long-term commitment to diversify our economy and energy mix. On November 30th 2015 the UAE joined the world leaders in Paris to launch Mission Innovation which aims to accelerate the public and private global clean energy innovation with the objective to make clean energy widely affordable.

In 2014, the UAE launched a National Innovation Strategy and the Science and Technology with the aim of making the UAE one of the most innovative nations in the world within seven years. The strategy aims at: insuring an innovation friendly ecosystem (including enhanced regulatory framework, technology infrastructure, supporting services, investments and incentives); creating a culture of innovation among individuals, firms, and the public sector; focusing on seven main sectors to lead innovation on the national level. Renewable and Clean Energy is one among the seven main sectors identified by the government.

Following the launch of the National Innovation Strategy the Science Technology and Innovation policy was prepared and which identified 24 focus areas including Solar and Alternative Energy Technology Systems and Smart City Applications and Solutions. Under the guidance of the national strategies the UAE is moving towards innovation in clean energy and energy efficiency to address economic growth and energy security.

In line with the vision of the mission innovation the UAE pledges the doubling clean energy R&D by 2021 based on the baseline set in 2015. These support highlight UAE’s strong believe in research and development for resolving the challenge which hinder the implementation of clean energy and energy efficiency programs in UAE.

Baseline and Doubling Plans

  • Country-Determined Baseline Year(s): 2015
  • Baseline Funding Amount: USD $10 million
  • Doubling Target-Year: 2021
  • Doubling Target Amount: USD $34.1 million
  • First-Year Mission Innovation Funding Amount: USD $12.2 million
  • First-Year Mission Innovation Funding Increment: USD $2.2 million
  • First-Year Funding Percent Increase: 22%

Country-Definition of Clean Energy R&D Investment

Low C/GHG technologies, including End-Use Efficiency, Renewables Energy, Nuclear, CCUS, Electric Grid, Storage technologies, Sustainable Transport system and fuel, Use-Inspired Basic and Exploratory Research.

Overview of Clean Energy R&D Focus Areas Emphasized in Mission Innovation Portfolio

Industry & buildings


Vehicles & other transportation


Bio-based fuels & energy


Solar, wind & other renewables


Nuclear energy


Hydrogen & fuel cells
Cleaner fossil energy
CO2 capture, utilization & storage


Electricity grid


Energy storage


Basic energy research


Indicators are for key areas of Mission Innovation R&D investment but do not imply a comprehensive representation of a country’s full R&D portfolio.

Additional Information


*The above figure reflects the commitment of the UAE for innovation of new clean energy technologies that will address the challenge which could prevent the wide application of clean energy technologies in the UAE.


“Recently, the UAE has witnessed record reduction in levelized cost of power generation from utility grade solar pv plants. The latest auction for a 800 MW plant in Dubai achieved a new record price of 2.99 US Cents/Kwh. The UAE’s investment in solar is part of a broader national strategy to diversify the power supply mix and reduce reliance on natural gas which has been fueling water and power generation in the country almost entirely. UAE’s national target of 24% clean power in overall generation mix by 2021 shall be exceeded by current projects only. In addition to the 800 MW, another 350 MW solar power project tender was floated in Abu Dhabi, which received bids from over 30 companies highlighting a rapidly evolving solar market in the country. These solar projects are being developed through an IPP framework which has brought in significant investment to the country in solar power generation. To facilitate the deployment of solar in UAE, the government has also invested in innovative applied research projects. In particular, the research and development seeks to tailor the solar technologies to the harsh climate of the region. The knowledge developed shall be useful for increased adoption of solar in all desert countries.

– H.E. Dr. Matar Hamed Al Nyadi, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Energy of the United Arab Emirates

Related sites:

Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s website


Masdar Institute