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Mohammed bin Rashid: UAE will benefit most from global transformations in 2015


posted on 15/12/2014

Transformations and changes the world will witness in 2015 will produce positive outcomes for the UAE, given its diversified and vibrant economic base which benefits from international trade, strong confidence in the stability of the State and rich accumulated experiences in handling various events and changes, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has stated.
Sheikh Mohammed made his remarks while attending the Arab Strategy Forum (ASF 2014) yesterday in Dubai, which explored possible political and economic prospects in the region in 2015.
Commenting on the sessions, Sheikh Mohammed said the UAE had earlier prepared itself to face many world economic scenarios and had devised its domestic and foreign policies so that they might respond and adapt to all social and technological changes, and even political changes, through diversification of its economy away from relying upon oil exports.
The UAE, he continued, had also built balanced relations with other world economic powerhouses, far from narrowed alliances, and established a transparent foreign policy that is based upon active cooperation with all countries to pursue its interests.
Further, HH said he remains optimistic that positive political indices would emerge in our region in 2015, despite the formidable challenges the region is currently facing, noting that Egypt had strongly begun to regain its economic and political stability, the impact of which will be seen next year. There are also many positive signals regarding Iran's nuclear file, whose the start of its closure could be in 2015.
Additionally, he said a strong international alliance to counter terrorism indicates that a state such as Iraq could witness more stability.
On the economic plane, Sheikh Mohammed predicted that many Arab economies that import oil could benefit from low oil prices in the next year, positively impacting on the development, stability and market movement. HH also expected that several development projects in the Gulf countries would be launched and strong economic partnerships with some countries, such as Egypt and Jordan, would be forged.
Concluding his outlook for 2015, Sheikh Mohammed said, 'Despite the many challenges we are living through every day, and those we are going to live through in the future, we must always look at the positive aspects in our region, work to develop and take the best of them, avoid exaggerated media analyses which paint a bleak future for the region, because good is always on the side of the optimistic, who work for it and vice versa.
In attendance were H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister for Cabinet Affairs, and an elite of media persons, along with others. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395273806472.html

Mohammed bin Rashid: Arab world braces for rapid changes
The Arab world will experience economic, political and social changes that require governments to adopt flexible and wise policies to cope with them, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum had said.
In a statement made ahead of the opening of the Arab Strategy Forum, Sheikh Mohammed said that politicians, economists and intellectuals were also required to look for answers to the future and the changes it will bring.
"part of investing in the future is to invest in foreseeing it and to prepare the tools and plans for it," he said.
In order to succeed in this rapidly changing world, Sheikh Mohammed went on, we need a clear, long-term vision and flexible and short-term evolving plans.
Sheikh Mohammed said the UAE had become an economic and political force in the region and the world "because we had a head start in studying the future and its implications. We are part of an extremely complex region, a well connected global economy and a fast changing world of technology and therefore, there is more need to invest in the future." The Arab Strategy Forum, beginning tomorrow, will host, among others, political expert Francis Fukuyaman, author of End of History and Paul Krugman, holder Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences and a number of experts in a bid to draw a map of the state of the world and the state of the Arab world in 2015.
The forum will discuss the main expected political and economic changes in addition to mapping the main influential powers and major economic trends. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates-international/1395273762970.html

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UAE fiscal strength ‘very high’


posted on 11/12/2014

The UAE, which has the highest rating in the GCC along with Kuwait and Qatar, has been ranked at "very high” by Moody's in terms of fiscal strength, reflecting the sound capacity of the government to mobilise resources to repay its debt.
The global ratings agency said in its latest credit analysis that such a very high score is shared only by countries including Luxembourg (Aaa stable), Hong Kong (Aa1 stable) and Switzerland (Aaa stable). "The outlook on the UAE's Aa2 foreign and local-currency government issuer ratings has been stable since we upgraded it by one notch in 2007,” a Moody's Investor Service report said.
The UAE's ranking is supported by large consolidated fiscal surpluses, a moderate level of consolidated direct government debt and the public sector's sizeable stock of offshore assets, mainly held by Abu Dhabi, it said.
"We expect low oil prices to considerably reduce the surplus this year, but not dent overall fiscal strength. Absent structural reforms, however, a protracted period of low oil prices would weaken the UAE's buffers,” Moody's said.
The UAE's consolidated government debt is low and stable at 26 per cent of the gross domestic product in 2013. "This takes into account the direct government obligations of the governments and official entities. About 75 per cent of debt is domestically held, primarily by local banks. However, this figure does not take into account debt incurred by state-owned enterprises and masks disparities between Abu Dhabi and Dubai,” it said.
In 2014, government debt is scheduled to increase in Dubai and the Northern Emirates. The government of Dubai issued a $750 million sukuk in April 2014, while Sharjah issued a debut $750 million sukuk in September 2014.
Moody's noted that vast hydrocarbon reserves and the robust balance sheet of the combined emirate and federal governments underpin the UAE's fiscal strength. With the exception of 2009, it has recorded 10 years of consolidated surpluses that have enabled it to accumulate large external reserves, most of which are in the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, the third-largest sovereign-wealth fund in the world. Other credit strengths include the UAE's sound policy framework, a primary driver of the UAE's rapid non-oil growth and resilience to past oil price shocks, the ratings agency explained.
Moody's argued that the recent oil price decline did not dent the UAE's fiscal strength as the country benefits from several buffers. The country's fiscal breakeven oil price has fallen back below $80 and Abu Dhabi's reserves will continue to smooth the impact of oil price cycles.
"However, the country's non-oil economy is relatively leveraged and exposed to a regional slowdown, given Dubai's focus on logistics, trade and transport,” it said.
The report pointed out that there are two constraints on the UAE's rating. First, transparency is limited in the government-related institutions sector and in the public dissemination of economic and fiscal data. Second, geopolitical dynamics pose low-probability, high-impact risks for the Gulf. Current causes for concern include destabilising violence in Iraq and tensions surrounding Iran's nuclear programme.
Moody's credit analysis elaborates on the UAE's credit profile in terms of economic strength, institutional strength, fiscal strength and susceptibility to event risk.
"We assess the UAE's economic strength at very high, based on its high per capita income, competitive non-oil sectors and hydrocarbon reserves that are both large and accessible. With a GDP per capita of $63,180 per capita PPP, the UAE ranks similarly to Norway [$64,363], Switzerland [$53,976] and the United States [$53,001].
Moody's noted that the UAE's economy is particularly diversified relative to Kuwait and Qatar and benefits from developed capital markets and a benign business environment. – Khaleej Times - http://www.khaleejtimes.com/biz/inside.asp?xfile=/data/uaebusiness/2014/December/uaebusiness_December133.xml§ion=uaebusiness

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UAE yet again proves its credentials in transparency


posted on 06/12/2014

Being voted as the least corrupt nation in the Mena region bears testimony to its clean governance, an Emirati newspaper has said, referring to the UAE.
The English language daily 'Gulf News' said in a commentary yesterday as a watchdog of the stumbling blocks to every country's national interests, the Corruption Perception Index organised by Transparency International, a global coalition service against corruption, flags up the bad guys and the good in its scrutiny of 175 countries every year. A swathe of sectors such as governments, police and the bureaucracy follow the index's findings keenly and for countries that get a clean bill of health, it is an acknowledgement of their commitment to transparency.
"The UAE enjoys an enviable place on this list and this year, it has been voted as the least corrupt country in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena). On a scale of 100, with 100 being the best, the UAE scored 70. For a country that is only 43 years old, this is a tremendous feat. It is a testimony to the UAE's commitment to good governance, its inclusive policies and its concern for the welfare of its people the latter truth upheld by the range of government initiatives that encourage them to actively participate in enabling a more dynamic governance," the paper said.
"Given that some of the biggest and most populous countries in the world India, China, Russia and Brazil have been indicted by the index is telling on the conceit of big nations that fail to uphold ethics at the cost of beleaguering their people. The UAE, with its clear-headed vision and emphasis on results, is proving how placing the nation's interests above all is a sure-fire formula for success," it added. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates-international/1395273446275.html

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Mohammed bin Rashid awards 43 Emirati Top Achievement Medals


posted on 02/12/2014

Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has emphasised that the UAE, led by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has global ambitions to be the first in the world in innovation, economy, tourism, energy and other sectors, and the most important matter for the UAE leadership is to be the first in ensuring happiness for the UAE people.
This came when His Highness Sheikh Mohammed granted the Medal of Top Emiratis to 43 Emirati persons, who have had a head start in various educational, health, economic, military, sports and other fields in the country, in addition to a group of Emirati achievers in the fields of distinguished innovations, inventions and initiatives.
The ceremony was attended by H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, and other ministers, where H.H. Sheikh Mansour received a Medal of Top Emiratis on behalf of "The Mother of the Emirates".
Speaking on the occasion, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed said that, "The late Sheikhs Zayed and Rashid were the first to state that they would do well not be satisfied without achieving first place and they noted that the UAE people love the first rank."
Commenting on honouring of H.H. Sheikha Fatima, Sheikh Mohammed said, "She has set an example in the women empowerment field through developing their capacity building to keep pace with the international development in this respect. Through her perseverance she supplied the country with efficient women cadres capable of contributing effectively to the UAE's nation-building".

Sheikh Mohammed expressed his satisfaction about the volume of societal participation in nomination of 137, 000 candidates over 15 days.

"The strength of the Union lies in the strength of Emiratis. And the future of the Union depends on excellence of Emiratis. The excellence of Emiratis in all fields is the key to success among other nations," he added, noting that the honorary occasion is to highlight the success of outstanding Emiratis so as to set an example for others.

He added that the UAE ambitions to score top positions could not be attained unless each Emirati youth, ministry, department and institution aspire to score top position. Sheikh Mohammed underlined that the future of UAE will be realised by top achievers equipped with the excellence and innovation.

The ceremony was also attended by Lt. General Misbah bin Rashid AI Fattan, Director of the Office of the Vice President, Khalifa Saeed Suleiman, Director- General of the Department of Protocol and Hospitality in Dubai.

Sheikh Mohammed honoured 43 Emirati personalities by awarding them Emirati Top Achievement Medals. Their names will be archived in the UAE memory in the Government Year Book.

The list of honorees of year 2014 includes the following: The late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum and H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak.

First Emirati college graduate: Sheikh Mohammed bin Saeed bin Ghobash.

First Emirati woman teacher in the formal education: Sheikha Na'ama bin Majid Al Qasimi.

First Emirati woman teacher in the formal education: Amina Salim Al-Hajri.

First Emirati Doctor with university degree: Dr. Ahmed Kadhim.

First Emirati martyr: Corporal Salem Suhail Khamis.

First Emirati to join the Armed Forces: Colonel Mohammed Saleh Al Qayedi.

First Emirati woman to join the Armed Forces: Brigadier doctor / Asmaa Sultan Al Mughairi.

The first Emirati university professor: Dr. Rashid Abdul Rahman Al Saeed.

The first Emirati woman to hold a PhD Degree: Dr. Aisha Al Al Sayar.

The first Emirati Editor -In-Chief of a daily newspaper after the establishment of the Union: Khalid Mohammed Ahmed.

The first Emirati radio anchor : Hessa Al Asali.

The first Chairman of Supreme Federal Court : Abdul Wahab Abdoul.

The first Emirati woman to join the judiciary: Kholood Joua'an Al Dhahiri.

The first Ambassador of the UAE after the establishment of the Union: Dr. Ali Al Humaidan.

The first Emirati woman Ambassador: Sheikha Najla Al Qasimi.

The first Emirati policeman: Mohammed Saeed Buhumaid.

The first Emirati novel writer: Rashid Abdullah Al Nuaimi.

First Emirati banker: Essa Saleh Al Gurg.

The first elected woman to the membership of Federal National Council: Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi.

The first Emirati national team coach: Juma Ghareeb.

The first Emirati to win the Olympic gold medal: Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Hasher Al Maktoum.

The first Emirati nurse : Hussein Qa'ed.

The first Emirati woman photographer: Sheikha Al Suwaidi.

The first Emirati to win the global medal in the para-Olympic: Humaid Hassan Murad Al Mazem.

The first Emirati woman to win the Olympic medal: H.H. Sheikha Maitha bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

The first captain of the national team: Ahmed Essa.

The first Emirati international referee: Abdullah Al Sai.

The first Emirati inventor: Saqr Majid Al Marri.

The first Emirati child selected among 8 most genius children in the world according the CNN: Adib Suleiman Al Baloushi.

The first Emirati nuclear engineer: Amani Al Hosni.

The first director of project for launching the UAE satellite: Salem Humaid Al Marri The first Emirati to invent artificial livre from hollow fibre in the world: Professor Ali Al Naqbi.

The first Emirati who invented DNA male profile for criminal use in the world: Rashid Hamdan Al Ghaferi.

The first Emirati woman to make a genetic map for prevention and early detection of diabetes: Dr. Habiba Al-Saffar.

The first Emirati woman to invent a device to introduce catheter tube through a vein for crucial heart operations: Dr. Hawaa Al Mansouri.

The first Emirati to invent a mechanism for generation of biofuels with industrial quantities using genetically-modified algae: Ahmad Al Harethi.

The first international Emirati robotics expert: Mohammed Mattar Al Shamsi.

The first Emirati inventor to win the gold medals at the World Inventions Exhibition: Ahmed Majan.

The first Emirati to invent the automatic detection of toxic gases in the oil and gas fields through thermal reading: Dr. Mohammed Marzouqi.

First blind Emirati to obtain a PhD: Dr. Ahmed Al Omran.

First Emirati to score Asian achievement in special need sports: Thuraya Ahmed Zaabi.

First policewoman: Salem Khamis Al Hamedh.


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U.A.E. Government launches its official Instagram account


posted on 19/11/2014

The United Arab Emirates Government has launched its official account on "Instagram" in order to raise awareness about its work and activities among various segments of the community.
The new account, @UAEGOV, is an official platform to introduce and share federal government activities with the public in an innovative manner. It reflects the leadership growing interest in employing latest technologies to engage with various segments of the community.
The federal government official account on Instagram includes a library of exclusive photos of officials and behind the scenes of work in government entities. It gives the viewers a glimpse of a working environment that fosters innovation and creativity.
It includes on-the-spot information on meetings of the U.A.E. Cabinet and the Ministerial Cabinet for Services to make the public aware and engaged about various topics of concern to them. It also has a documented historic archive of the Cabinet as well interactive questions about the U.A.E., achievements and progress.
The U.A.E.'s official Instagram account, @UAEGOV, is the second channel for the Federal Government after the U.A.E. Government "YouTube" which was launched in June by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, U.A.E. Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. The channel is an official and exclusive source of news related to the federal government's activities which are broadcast with the highest technical quality. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272632285.html

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Sharjah Ruler meets media personalities


posted on 17/11/2014

His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, met last night at Al Badee Al Amir Palace with chief editors and representatives of the U.A.E.-based local and foreign newspapers and radio and television channels.
At the beginning of the meeting, organised by the Sharjah media centre, Sheikh Sultan welcomed the guests and spoke about the establishment of the U.A.E., thanks to the founding fathers' dedication and resolve.
"We were young at that time and we were inspired by the founding fathers, including the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum and their brothers the rulers, who did not go to universities, but realised very well that none can serve a nation but its own people," he recalled.
Sheikh Sultan also talked about the day when the late Sheikh Khalid bin Mohammed Al Qasimi asked him to become a minister in the new government shortly after his return from Egypt.
"When we started to serve in the government, everything was literally lacking, but thanks to the determination of our leaders, the U.A.E. has become what it is today. The most contributing factor was that there no barriers between the rulers and the people." Sheikh Sultan gave an insight into the journalistic code of ethics in the U.A.E. and emphasised the need for journalists to adhere to objectivity and stay away from controversial reporting.
Answering a question on protecting education from destructive thoughts, Sheikh Sultan said the U.A.E. was quick to realise the need for raising the young generations on the basis of tolerant teachings of Islam to guarantee efficient educational outputs.
"When your home catches fire, the first thing you think about is to put the fire out. This is exactly what the enemies want us to do. In other words, they have this sinister plan of keeping us busy with our own infightings," he said.
He referred to the strong stand taken by the U.A.E. and other GCC countries for Egypt to assume its leading role in the Arab world and stressed that the security of Egypt is integral to the GCC's security.
He also highlighted the pioneering political participation process in the U.A.E. which is evident in the election of Federal National Council members. - Emirates News Agency, WAM – http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272524296.html

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Fifth Annual Sir Bani Yas Forum concludes in Abu Dhabi


posted on 17/11/2014

The fifth annual Sir Bani Yas Forum, organised by the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) Ministry of Foreign Affairs in collaboration with the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), concluded on Sunday in Abu Dhabi.
The annual high-level retreat is the initiative of H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister. The aim of the Forum is to create a space for action-oriented discussions among leading policy and opinion-makers about critical issues of relevance for peace and security in the Middle East.
The Forum, which ran from 14 to 16 November, featured discussions around central issues confronting regional and world leaders in the Middle East, including the crisis in Iraq and Syria, the role of Islamist movements, the changing political and security landscape in North Africa, the Middle East Peace Process, the role of Iran in the Middle East, and the shifting interests and actions of Great Powers in the region.
Current and former foreign ministers from the Middle East, Europe, Africa, the Americas, and Asia, as well as a select number of international policy experts, convened to share their knowledge and understanding.
In this context, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, said, "Solving the challenges in the Middle East and around the world today requires partnership, frank exchanges, and a foundation of mutual respect and understanding. This year's Forum once again provided a unique opportunity for policymakers and experts to find common ground for addressing the immense challenges we face and to identify new opportunities for collaboration." CSIS President and CEO Dr. John Hamre said, "I can't think of a more important time to bring together senior officials and experts to devise creative solutions to the problems we all face in the Middle East today. We were pleased to have an opportunity to work with the U.A.E. Government on this important initiative." Reflecting upon proceedings at the Forum, Jordanian Foreign Minister, Nasser Judeh, said, "The openness of the beautiful desert provides the perfect setting for decision makers and opinion leaders to have an open, analytical, and objective-driven discussion." Former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd observed, "In a time of great regional peril, this conference is not only an opportunity for current and former officials to share analysis, but also a tremendous opportunity to help shape solutions." The Forum also featured exclusive polling, conducted by Dr. James Zogby, which surveyed thousands of people across the region on their attitudes toward key issues, including how they viewed the outcome of the Arab Spring and their perceptions of different governments and political groups.
The Forum was held at the Qasr Al Sarab desert resort in the Liwa Desert of Abu Dhabi.
As in past years, all proceedings were conducted under the Chatham House Rule of non-attribution; there were no prepared statements, no communiques, and no reporting media. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395272518220.html

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Government of Dubai repays Dh7.1 billion liabilities


posted on 04/11/2014

The Government of Dubai, represented by the Department of Finance, yesterday announced repayment of Dirham Sukuk worth Dh2.5 billion and dollar Sukuk worth US$1.25 billion, due on 3rd November 2014 and issued on 28th October, 2009.
The Department said it has recovered all Sukuk by repaying the amounts required by holders of Sukuk with due revenues through the agent.
Abdul Rahman Saleh Al Saleh, Director-General of the department, said the repayment in time reflects the government's commitment to repay all liabilities as per schedule.
He added that the government was keen to pay all the financial liabilities in accordance with the schedule, noting that "it is a huge step, which highlights the clarity of vision of the government about the future. It also reflects great confidence reposed by regional and international business communities on the Emirate of Dubai." http://www.wam.ae/en/news/economics/1395271852393.html

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Mohammed bin Rashid launches National Innovation Strategy


posted on 20/10/2014

The U.A.E. will become one of the most innovative countries in the world through a focus on seven sectors: renewable energy, transport, education, health, technology, water and space.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the U.A.E. and Ruler of Dubai, launched a National Innovation Strategy yesterday that aims to make the U.A.E. among the most innovative nations in the world within seven years.
The strategy will stimulate innovation in seven sectors where innovation is key to excellence: renewable energy, transport, education, health, technology, water and space. Its first phase includes 30 national initiatives to be completed within three years. These include new legislation, innovation incubators, investment in specialised skills, private-sector incentives, international research partnerships, and an innovation drive within government.
"The UAE is already the most innovative Arab nation. Our target is to be among the most innovative nations in the world. The competitiveness race demands a constant flow of new ideas, as well as innovative leadership using different methods and tools to direct the change," HH Sheikh Mohammed said at the launch of the strategy.
"This innovation strategy is a national priority for our programme of development and progress. It is a primary tool to achieve Vision 2021 and an engine for the growth of distinctive skills and capabilities across the nation. We have always called for creativity in every field: this strategy is a concrete step to implement that vision. These initiatives around innovation will enhance quality of life in the UAE and take our economy to new horizons," HH Sheikh Mohammed added.
H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, and Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister for Cabinet Affairs were present at the launch ceremony.
The strategy works along 4 parallel tracks.
The first track will anchor a stimulating environment for innovation in the form of supportive institutions and laws. It will shape specialised entities such as innovation incubators as well as technological infrastructure to fuel innovation in all sectors. It will also focus on research and development in various innovation fields.
The second track will develop government innovation by institutionalising innovative practices with the support of an integrated system of modern tools. The strategy requires all government entities to reduce spending by 1% and to dedicate the savings to research and innovation projects. National training and education programmes on innovation will also be launched.
The third track will encourage private sector innovation by stimulating companies to establish innovation and scientific research centres, to adopt new technologies, and to develop innovative products and services. The U.A.E. will attract pioneering international firms in key innovation sectors, establish innovation communities and zones, and support applied research in areas of national priority. It will also enhance the UAE's position as an international centre to test new innovations.
The fourth track will qualify individuals with highly innovative skills by concentrating on science, technology, engineering and mathematics, including the creation of educational material for schools and universities. The aim is to establish a national culture that encourages innovation and entrepreneurship through partnerships between the public, private and media sectors.
"Innovation today is driven by effective institutions, strong policies, specialised skills, and an economy where all sectors work together to discover new ways to conduct business. A flexible and creative economy based on a national culture of innovation is the fastest and most sustainable way to reinforce the U.A.E.'s competitiveness on a global level," HH Sheikh Mohammed said.
Current annual investment in innovation is worth Dh 14 billion in the U.A.E., of which Dh 7 billion goes to research and development. Innovation spending will rise significantly in the years to come.
The National Innovation Strategy includes 16 indicators to measure progress. Government-sector indicators include the percentage of innovative ideas and the proportion of budget allocated to innovation. Private-sector indicators include R&D investment and the knowledge profile of the workforce. Global indicators include an overall measure comparing countries' innovation capabilities, as well as indicators for the protection of intellectual property, the creation of patents and the availability of scientists and engineers.
The strategy contains practical initiatives in each of its seven priority sectors.
In the field of renewable energy, the strategy will establish a new organisation to facilitate decentralised power generation projects such as small-scale solar installations. The strategy will also encourage innovation in the renewables industry while also supporting applied research in clean technology.
In transportation, the strategy will stimulate innovation in air and sea travel as well as logistics. The aim is to provide new products and services, make procedures more effective, and save time. The strategy will also focus on innovation in the field of unmanned drones.
In education, the strategy will establish innovation labs in schools and universities as part of a drive to equip students with targeted skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, creativity, perseverance and adaptability.
In health, the strategy will promote advanced technologies in healthcare services. It will stimulate the growth of the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries while also working with strategic partners to support medical research.
On the topic of water, the strategy will seek innovative solutions to the challenge of water scarcity.
Finally, the strategy will support space technology for the purpose of exploration as well as satellite communications and specialised research on terrestrial applications. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395271086315.html

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U.A.E.’s growing openness


posted on 16/10/2014

The nation has taken a strong position against religious extremism and is standing up for the values of open thinking and stability
The U.A.E. is achieving growing global and regional influence by focusing on being an active part of the global community and working towards the transparent values that allow individuals the security of the rule of law. This is in sharp contrast to some other Middle East countries that have got lost in predatory authoritarian governance and are now stuck in sectarian or military struggles, which have dragged them backwards into chaos and despair, rather than offering their populations hope that their ambitions can be fulfilled.
The U.A.E. is a small country that cannot hope to be a regional power as traditionally defined through large populations and military authority. Instead, it is using its wealth to build the necessary infrastructure and social and business environment that will make the country one of the world's major business hubs.
The work for this has been going on for a long time, but it is now becoming more globally recognised. For example, in August, Forbes magazine rated Dubai as the seventh most influential city in the world. It was also the only city from the developing world to make it to the top 20. The magazine attributed this to Dubai's strategy of focusing on prosperity and globalisation. The list was topped by London, followed by New York, Paris and Singapore, which Forbes pointed out signalled a shift of power to "savvy” cities, as it added that the cities to watch are Houston, Seoul, Shanghai and Abu Dhabi. This high-tech environment is exactly where the cities of the U.A.E. are heading, as illustrated by this week's rollout of hundreds of free Wi-Fi hot spots in Abu Dhabi and Dubai as a start towards making U.A.E. cities fully connected at all times.
The question is what will the U.A.E. do with its growing influence? For decades, it has made its own internal development its major priority, because in 1971, the country started with very rudimentary facilities and very limited education. Four decades of hard work has lifted the country into a totally different league and has allowed it to look ahead with a lot more confidence and vision.
This is why it is seeing what is happening in the region and offering some alternatives to the current chaos. The U.A.E. has taken a strong position against religious extremism and is standing up for the values of open thinking and stability, which are designed to reject the nihilism of radical terrorists, and find a way to help end the civil wars and social collapse in Iraq, Syria and Libya.
Defeating Daesh (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) requires both military and political strategies, which is why His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the U.A.E. and Ruler of Dubai, recently spelt out three long-term social and developmental points with which to combat extremism, based very much on the fundamentals of governance that have succeeded in taking the U.A.E. this far.
Shaikh Mohammad's first idea was to counter malignant ideas with enlightened thinking, open minds and an attitude of tolerance and acceptance. His second was to support the governments' efforts to create stable institutions that can deliver real services to the people; and the third element was to address the black holes of human development, which include poverty, lack of education and poor health care, as well as lack of economic opportunities. These kind of priorities as put forward by Shaikh Mohammad combine the growing authority of the U.A.E. as an important emerging global hub with the country's own experience in fostering tolerance and the rule of law as the basis of building a new economy in which its people can succeed in achieving ambitions.
The U.A.E.'s success in becoming a hub linking Asia, Africa and Europe has been noticed in several forums. While most of the attention has been on how the U.A.E. is looking to its new partners in Asia and the Far East, a new paper by Afshin Molavi of Johns Hopkins University has looked at how Dubai is becoming a gateway to Africa for many multinationals as they use their operations in the city to build a new Africa strategy.
The 54 states of Africa have gone from a modest joint gross domestic product of US$600 billion (Dh2.2 billion) in 2000, to close to US$2.2 trillion today. This extraordinary growth has forced the world to take a new look at the emerging prosperity and power of African states. U.A.E. companies like etisalat and DP World have led the way in direct investment, while U.A.E. airlines like Emirates and Etihad are expanding their networks across the continent. In addition, Dubai's successful bid to host the World Expo 2020 will also give the country greater respect as more people will visit it and realise how it is a key nexus of commerce, investment and tourism.
What emerges from all this will be a combination of more domestic prosperity for the U.A.E., as well as a much increased influence in the region and the world at large, using the key principles of tolerance and openness that are part of the U.A.E.'s Arab and Islamic identity. This readiness to help define the matrix that will support a more secure world is as important as any short-term military activity. By Francis Matthew | Editor at Large – Gulf News - http://gulfnews.com/opinions/columnists/uae-s-growing-openness-1.1399359

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Mohammed bin Rashid honours former ministers of education, justice and former Governor of Central Bank


posted on 13/10/2014

The U.A.E. will never forget those who offered small or large contributions and that work and accumulated experience in the service of the nation will always be highly appreciated and used by federal and local governments, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum affirmed yesterday.
'We have nothing called retirement in the U.A.E., and the service of the nation is a whole life as we are all dedicate our lives for the service of the U.A.E.,' Sheikh Mohammed said at a ceremony to honour former ministers of education and justice and former governor of the U.A.E. Central Bank in the presence of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, and a number Sheikhs and ministers.
HH expressed, on behalf of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and the U.A.E. people, profound thanks to the honourees for the efforts and time they spent in the service and glory of the nation and its people and urged them to continue their contribution to the government work through communication, advice and work, emphasising that he had spent during the last years a time that was full of work and achievements within the umbrella of the Council of Ministers or working together to enhance the national economy.
'Today, your brothers take up the torch and they will complete what you have started and add to what you have built like what you did with your predecessors. This is the cycle of life where each team completes what others started,' Sheikh Mohammed concluded.
The honourees were Obeid Mohammed Al Qattami, who served as minister of education from 2006 to 2009 and as minister of education from 2009 to 2014, Dr. Haded Al Dhehri who served as minister of justice from 2008 to 2014 in addition to Sultan Nasser Al Suwaidi who took the portfolio of the Governor of the U.A.E. Central Bank from 1991-2014. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395270758798.html

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UAE hails Malala Yousafzai on winning Nobel Peace Prize


posted on 11/10/2014

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the

UAE Armed Forces, has congratulated Malala Yousafzai for winning the Nobel Peace Prize 2014 along with Indian child activist Kailash Satyarthi.

During a telephone conversation with Malala, Sheikh Mohamed expressed his pleasure at her winning the Nobel prize, the official news agency WAM reported.

He pointed out that the prize is a tribute to her courage and perseverance in standing up against ignorance and obscurantism and her insistence on the path of tolerance, love and peace.

He also said: "Your determination in seeking to address the advocates of ignorance and extremism is an exemplary model which is inspiring for peace lovers aspiring towards a better future for mankind."
 
He also stated that her strong will to ensure that women have access to education instilled confidence and determination in many others.

His hope was that the prize would contribute to increased global awareness for the importance of women's education, and give women everywhere the best opportunities for development and growth.

Malala is the youngest person to win the Nobel Peace Prize.

In May 2013, Sheikh Mohamed welcomed Malala to Abu Dhabi and praised her determination to overcome difficulties, and encouraged her to continue her noble mission, adding that it was a duty of all people to stand by Malala, as she spreads the message of love and peace. Gulf News - http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/uae/uae-hails-malala-1.1396944

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Mohamed bin Zayed receives phone call from U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden


posted on 06/10/2014

His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces, has received a phone call from U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden.
In the phone call, Joseph Biden apologised to U.A.E. for any implications in his recent statements that were understood to mean that U.A.E. has backed the growth of some of the terrorist organisations in the region.
Biden added that the United States appreciates the U.A.E.'s historic role in combating extremism and terrorism as well as its advanced position in this respect.
Mr. Biden also hailed the U.A.E.'s close cooperation with the international community on bolstering the foundations of stability and safety in the region.
In the phone conversation, His Highness Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed and the U.S. Vice President discussed the bilateral relations between U.A.E and the United States and ways of supporting and enhancing the strategic cooperation between the two friendly countries.
The two sides emphasised the common view of the two countries on combating and confronting terrorist organisations and their deviated and extremist ideology, which demands a regional and international effort to combat, besiege and eradicate them and dry out their financial resources.
They also emphasised the importance of international cooperation and all efforts that would put an end to these organisations and their terrorist practices, and that at the forefront of this cooperation comes the current international coalition which is fighting these organisations and foiling their goals of spreading chaos in the region.
The two sides also exchanged views on the other developments in the region and their two countries' positions on them. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395270537130.html

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President, VP and Mohamed bin Zayed congratulate el-Sisi on 6th October War Victory Anniversary


posted on 06/10/2014

President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has sent a congratulatory cable to the Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, on the occasion of the anniversary of the glorious 6th October War Victory.
Sheikh Khalifa expressed his best wishes to the Arab Republic of Egypt on this historic occasion, when the Egyptian people offered sacrifices which restored confidence among all Arab citizens.
He added, "This glorious occasion has drawn a path filled with hope and high national spirit among the Egyptian people and the Arab nation, which also inspired them with lessons regarding current challenges facing the Arab nation and requires all of us to unite to face them, particularly terrorism, which has become an international phenomenon, in addition to preserving the Arab world's capabilities and people from its surrounding threats." Sheikh Khalifa also hailed the vital role of the Arab Republic of Egypt in hoisting the Arab flag high and confronting all challenges, pointing out that Egypt is restoring strongly its natural position amid these challenges. "A strong and prosperous Egypt represents the Arab's biggest strategic strength," he said.
Sheikh Khalifa recalled the historic role of the founder of the U.A.E., the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and his support during 6th October War, stressing that the U.A.E.'s leadership and people are pursuing the approach to support Egypt, due to the vital and important role of that country in the historical events being witnessed in the Arab world.
'On this national occasion, we pray to Allah Almighty to have mercy on those martyrs during the war of dignity and pride, who provided the best meanings of glory and sacrifice, we also wish you Mr. President all good luck to continue achieving the aspirations of the Egyptian people for more progress, welfare and prosperity in order to attain prestigious stature among countries of the world." Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces also dispatched similar cables of congratulations to the Egyptian President on the occasion. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395270532174.html

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Mohamed bin Zayed reviews progress of government work, development projects


posted on 02/10/2014

Continuous delivery of sustainable development requires a state-of-the-art infrastructure that keeps pace with the development that the U.A.E. is witnessing in implementation of the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, to raise the profile of the U.A.E. and honour serving the progress, development and welfare of the Emirati people, His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces, and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council, underscored yesterday.
Sheikh Mohamed made his remarks during a meeting of the Abu Dhabi Executive Committee at Al Mamoura Building in the presence of H.H. Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, National Security Advisor and Deputy Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council. During the meeting, the Crown Prince was updated on the progress of the government of Abu Dhabi work and implementation of current initiatives and those planned for the future in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
Having reviewed government projects during the regular weekly meeting of the committee, H.H. instructed that all efforts be concerted and mobilised to implement these projects on a par with the best recognised practices, on the set schedule, and that circumstances be prepared to enable national professionals to shoulder their responsibilities in realising the Abu Dhabi Vision, playing a more significant and more effective role in the social, knowledge, educational and economic development.
The Executive Committee discussed a series of resolutions that emphasised the wise leadership's determination to upgrade the education sector and provide all means for improving the learning quality and increase the participation of citizens, in consistence with an inclusive, integrated vision for development of human resources in the education sector.
The Crown Prince also viewed plans prepared by the Department of Municipal Affairs to improve the health environment of Abu Dhabi city, particularly in areas of landscaping, lawns and gardens, through the awarding of maintenance and operation contracts worth more than Dh426 million, in accordance with the latest agricultural and irrigation techniques that reduce water consumption in line with environmental standards.
Sheikh Mohamed also received a detailed presentation on new projects aimed at raising the capacity of the electricity network in the emirate by approving construction of five combined distribution stations, supply and installation of power cables, electric equipment, digital power metres, overhead power lines and network upgrades at a total cost of over Dh 268 million.
These projects aim to boost the electricity network to meet growing demand and economic growth being experienced by the emirate.
Also reviewed during the meeting were the progress of infrastructure works in Khalifa City, including the internal lighting project utilising 3,108 light-emitting diode (LED) poles, sewerage works and the building of pavements at a total value of Dh 242 million as part of a project approved by the Abu Dhabi Executive Council last year.
The participants also discussed the work progress on the maintenance of internal roads and their completion phases in Abu Dhabi. They also discussed details on roads and infrastructure work in various areas in Al Ain, which are scheduled to start this year.
The projects include street lighting, car parks, the drainage network and pedestrian pavements at a total cost of Dh 40 million.
The projects also include the implementation of 12.5 kilometres of internal roads, 32.7 kilometres of pedestrian sidewalks, 1,935 car parking lots and about 9km of a storm drainage network, in addition to 430 lamp-posts.
The projects come within the ongoing modernisation and expansion of Abu Dhabi and Al Ain's infrastructure network in all sectors to keep pace with urban growth and ensure the best living standards for citizens.
The committee also reviewed the work progress on Mafraq-Ghweifat highway and the Abu Dhabi-Dubai main road projects.
Also reviewed were the latest achievements of the first phase of the Etihad Rail Project, including the line between Habshan and Al Ruwais, at a length of 140 km, in addition to another 20 km of detours and side tracks, which are deemed important milestones in the march of development process of the first railway in the U.A.E..
The first phase of the 264 km Shah-Habshan line will be fully completed at the end of this year. Seven carriages and 110 wagons will run on this line. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395270404499.html

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Minister of State tells Clinton meeting of importance of empowering women


posted on 26/09/2014

Minister of State Reem Al Hashimy was given a huge round of applause when she spoke of the importance of empowering women at the Clinton Global Initiative's annual meeting this week.
The education advocate told the New York audience that the UAE had a greater number of women in government agencies and on corporate boards when compared with some other Arab countries.
"If you are serious about improving the status of your economy, if you're serious about delivering on your economic agenda and creating prosperity for your citizens, and you're not going to empower women, you're never going to break the cycle of poverty,” Ms Al Hashimy said.
"In education, we have a lot of programmes that focus on girls, particularly because it really is, and has, a transformative impact and transformative repercussions in the community itself.
"Once a girl starts going to school and once she is more aware of what opportunities and challenges exist for her then you see automatically a whole series of macroeconomic indicators come into play.
"The use of technology is a fantastic enabler and we need to capitalise on that and harness that power.”
The CGI annual meeting included leaders from across the Middle East as regional unemployment and economic issues were discussed.
In her speech, Ms Al Hashimy, who is the chair of Dubai Cares, also warned against using a sweeping curriculum that did not take into account local employment needs.
"You can't use a cookie-cutter approach even in one country,” she said. "Different communities necessitate a different approach as well.”
The CGI brings together business leaders, heads of state and executives of non-profit organisations to address some of the world's most pressing social problems. – The National -
http://www.thenational.ae/uae/minister-of-state-tells-clinton-meeting-of-importance-of-empowering-women

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Foreign Ministry denounces Turkish President's anti-Egypt rhetoric in the UN


posted on 26/09/2014

The U.A.E. Ministry of Foreign Affairs has expressed its denunciation of the remarks made on Egypt by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during his speech before the UN General Assembly. The ministry described the remarks as "irresponsible and a flagrant intervention" in Egypt's internal affairs.
In a statement issued yesterday, the ministry said: "We were surprised by the Turkish President's remarks on Egypt and his exploitation of the UN as a platform to launch an unacceptable attack on the Egyptian legitimacy. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemns the irresponsible remarks and consider them a flagrant intervention in the internal affairs of fraternal Egypt and a provocation of the Arab sentiments." The ministry also called on the Turkish President to refrain from insulting the Egyptian government and people. – Emirates News Agency, WAM http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates-arab-international/1395270141917.html

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OIC welcomes President Obama’s call to confront extremist ideology


posted on 26/09/2014

JEDDAH: The Secretary General of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Iyad Ameen Madani, has welcomed the statement of U.S. President, Barack Obama, to work together to confront the ideology of ISIL, Al Qaeda, Boko Haram and other groups tarnishing the name of Islam.
Mr. Madani stressed that this message should also be expanded to include all extremist groups promulgating hate speech and violence against religious minorities and communities around the world, and also to confront the apartheid-like state terrorism of the current Israeli government.
The OIC Secretary-General, in a statement carried by the organisation website, expressed his appreciation of President Obama's reaffirmation that the United States is not, and never will, be at war with Islam, or a subscriber to the notion of a clash of civilisations, a view that was strongly peddled by some policy circles and self declared experts.
Mr. Madani also stressed the importance of President Obama's emphasis that, "...permanent religious war is the misguided refuge of extremists who cannot build or create anything, and therefore peddle only fanaticism and hate. And it is no exaggeration to say that humanity's future depends on us uniting against those who would divide us along fault lines of tribe or sect, race or religion." "The OIC takes the opportunity of the UN and UNSC's present attention to the issue of extremism and terrorism, to stress that the practices of terrorist groups such as ISIL, who falsely claim affiliation to the Islamic faith and seek to justify their criminal acts as being carried out for the cause of Islam, have nothing to do with Islam and its principles that call for justice, equality, compassion, freedom of faith and coexistence," Madani concluded.
The OIC has consistently condemned such movements and called for understanding and confronting the social and economic context and environment that breeds such extremism and to be on alert to those who use the fight against terrorism or penetrate extreme movements to widen and serve their political agendas. – Emirates News Agency, WAM http://www.wam.ae/en/news/international/1395270122232.html

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Mohammed bin Rashid and Mohamed bin Zayed meet to discuss national matters


posted on 22/09/2014

Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, yesterday met with His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces, to exchange brotherly talks and discuss issues of concern for the nation and citizens.
Their Highnesses reviewed their follow-up efforts to implement the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, in the provision of more possibilities to achieve glory and pride in the nation, and provide a decent life for citizens.– Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395269899927.html

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Mohammed bin Rashid chairs brainstorming session


posted on 14/09/2014

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of U.A.E. and Ruler of Dubai, has said the U.A.E.'s historic project to send an unmanned probe to Mars by 2021 would benefit all humanity and its findings would be made available to all countries to use.
Presiding over a brainstorming session with his team on Saturday, Sheikh Mohammed said the goal of the project is to develop knowledge within universities and research centres and to build national capabilities in the fields of aerospace.
Present during the session were H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister for Cabinet Affairs, Essa Kazim, Governor of Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and Khalifa Daeed Sulaiman, Director General of Dubai Protocol and Hospitality Department.
Sheikh Mohammed said Mars project requires lots of studies and research, leading to hosts of long term benefits including emergence of new sectors in the national economy, catering for telecommunications, satellites and data transfer.
"Retaining the same spot is in fact regress because the world is progressing and nations are competing", H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said when asked what would be next for U.A.E. to achieve after it earned the title of most efficient government in the world according to a report by the Swiss-based International Institute for Management Development (IMD).
He noted that achieving excellence is an ever-going quest that has no final destination. "There are a lot of fields for competition. The government also has many challenges to confront and handle. People's expectations are ever changing so there should be continuous development." Speaking on Yamamah, the horse ridden by H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, when he won the endurance gold medal at the Altech FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy in late August, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed said Yamamah is an Emirati mare that was born and raised in Al Marmoum area, in the desert of U.A.E.
He noted that he nominated the mare and that he advised Sheikh Hamdan to lower his speed during several stages in order to keep the mare's stamina throughout the competition.
Asked about his expectations from his work team, he said, "I only want what is good for all. I wish for happiness and well-being for them and their families. We only want you to benefit your nation, your families and yourselves." "Serving the nation is not a job. Serving the nation is a whole life. We gave our lives to this state. There are thousands of work teams in the state who work day and night in order to lift high the name of U.A.E., protect its gains and achieve prosperity for its people," H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said.
During the brainstorming session, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed and his team discussed the best ways of developing the leadership and excellence of the government, improving its services and increasing its new ideas.
At the end of the session, he hailed the new ideas presented by the employees whom he urged to maintain their aspirations and hopes for the future.
H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid affirmed that his vision includes the bolstering of new thought in the government based on innovation, coping with change and having interest in the excellent youth. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395269552962.html

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U.A.E. has clear plan to enhance its global competitiveness, says Mohammed bin Rashid


posted on 11/09/2014

The U.A.E., led by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has a clear vision and plan to improve its global competitiveness, as all federal, local and private sector teams work in harmony to implement this vision, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has said.
He added that the country's high interests require such a move, noting that it is a shared responsibility whose interest returns to the state and citizens as well.
The remarks were made during Sheikh Mohammed's visit to the General Secretariat of Emirates Competiveness Council at Emirates Towers, Dubai. He was accompanied by H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister for Cabinet Affairs, and Khalifa Saeed Suleiman, Director-General of the Protocol and Hospitality Department in Dubai.
Sheikh Mohammed interacted with the team over the next steps to enhance U.A.E. competiveness, and the most important international indices to gauge development progress in the U.A.E., as well as initiatives and decisions to further improve the U.A.E.'s global competitiveness status.
He thanked the team, who coordinate with international bodies to get reports on the most important development projects in the U.A.E., stressing the need for following up all the reports issued abroad on the U.A.E., and verify them for accuracy.
Sheikh Mohammed said the aim is to enhance the living condition standards of all citizens and residents, adding that the reports give accurate development indices that help in adjusting plans and launch more projects in the best interests of the community. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395269449929.html

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Vice President opens Mohammed bin Rashid Centre for Government Innovation


posted on 09/09/2014

Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, yesterday here launched the Mohammed bin Rashid Centre for Government Innovation at the Emirates Towers.
The centre aims to encourage and motivate innovation in the public sector through making available tools essential to formulate and develop organisational structures and procedures. It will also coordinate innovation labs in government entities to build capacity for innovation across the national workforce.
Accompanied by Dubai Deputy Ruler Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Cabinet Affairs Minister Mohammed Abdullah Al Gergawi and Dubai Director of Protocol and Hospitality Khalifa Saeed Suleiman, Sheikh Mohammed toured the centre. During the tour, Sheikh Mohammed was briefed on initiatives scheduled to be launched. These are developed in cooperation with top international institutions in the field of innovation in government services.
Reflecting on the U.A.E. government ranking as the most efficient in the world by the International Institute for Management Development, Switzerland, Sheikh Mohammed said that the government aims to be the most innovative as well. "Winning the competitiveness race and delivering strong government do not depend on money or resources. It is ideas that make the difference," Sheikh Mohamed stressed. He stressed the importance of harnessing the evolving advancements in technology to keep ahead in the race of competitiveness between nations.
In a move that will position the U.A.E. as a melting-point for innovation in government services, the centre will build a national database for innovative government initiatives and best international practices in this field. It will also consolidate individual initiatives by government entities into a unified framework to better serve federal and local government entities in the country and preserve intellectual rights associated with innovations in this area.
Upon directives by Sheikh Mohammed, the centre will forge partnerships with specialised international institutions, universities and centres that drive innovation in government services. He also underlined the importance of disseminating best practices in applying innovation in government services as he directed the centre to welcome delegations from other countries, thus promoting U.A.E.'s status as a leading destination of innovation in this area. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395269359996.html

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Mohamed bin Zayed visits U.A.E. national patient in hospital


posted on 22/08/2014

His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces, visited an Emirati national currently receiving medical treatment in Al Mafraq Hospital, to inquire about his health condition, under the framework of His Highness's keenness to follow up on the wellbeing of U.A.E. citizens.
His Highness Sheikh Mohamed visited Khalifa Saeed Fadhel Al Hamli, and exchanged pleasantries with him and his family, and after being reassured of his health progress, the Crown Prince wished him a speedy recovery.
Sheikh Mohammed was accompanied by H.H. Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Charitable and Humanitarian Foundation, during the visit.
On his part, Mr. Al Hamli expressed his thanks and appreciation to His Highness for the kind visit, and said that His Highness's care for the wellbeing of U.A.E. citizens reflects the close and cohesive relationship between the Emirati leadership and its citizens.
Members of the Al Hamli family also expressed their great happiness and privilege for the visit, saying that the visit follows in the footsteps of the wise leadership of the late Sheikh Zayed on taking care of his citizens. – Emirates News Agency, WAM - http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395268803354.html

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Mohammed bin Rashid highlights importance of social media networking as his followers exceed six million


posted on 10/08/2014

Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum followers on social media have exceeded six million across various channels.
Sheikh Mohammed took to Twitter to thank his followers by saying "My social media followers exceeded 3 million on Twitter, 2 million on Facebook and 1 million on both Instagram and Google+. I extend my thanks to all followers and to everyone interacting with us through providing new comments, suggestions and ideas." Stressing the importance of social media networking in the world today, he noted that such channels "created new opportunities, removed all barriers and made the audience part of our development plans." He continued, having a tremendous influence, today social media channels serve as an open parliament and cannot be ignored or misled. His Highness also praised the positive participation from his followers who use social media networking to offer suggestions, ideas and initiatives that add impetus to the socio-economic growth of the U.A.E.
Sheikh Mohammed also thanked his followers for the tremendous support regarding efforts directed at helping human beings irrespective of religion, colour or ethnicity.
In 2013, Sheikh Mohammed took to social media to ask followers to join a brainstorming session. "We want every man, woman and child to join us in the biggest ever national brainstorming session to find new ideas for health and education," His Highness said through his Twitter account. "Education and health concern all of us, so I invite all of U.A.E. society to think collectively of creative solutions," he continued.
Marking his accession as the Ruler of Dubai in 2014, Sheikh Mohammed launched the Twitter hashtag ‘Thank-you Khalifa' (in Arabic) in recognition and appreciation of U.A.E. President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, whom he called "a man of efforts and initiatives, which touch us all." The initiative made waves in record time as it reverberated through more than millions of accounts on social media websites in less than a week.
On the advent of the holy month of Ramadan this year, Sheikh Mohammed announced the ‘UAE Water Aid' campaign through social media. The success was overwhelming. More than Dh180 million of donations were collected during the fasting month with aim to provide clean drinking water to more than seven million people in poor countries. – Emirates News Agency, WAM – Read more:
http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395268475260.html

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U.A.E. leaders send condolence messages to President of China


posted on 04/08/2014

The President, His Highness Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has sent a cable of condolence to President Xi Jinping of China on the victims of the earthquake which hit south-western China earlier on Sunday.
Similar cables were sent to the President of China by His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the U.A.E. and Ruler of Dubai, and General Shaikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the U.A.E. Armed Forces. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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