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Abu Dhabi prepares for the arrival of the Solar Impulse 2

posted on 26/10/2014

Solar Impulse representatives have arrived in Abu Dhabi to meet with local authorities in preparation for the plane's arrival in January. With the historic flight scheduled to take off from Abu Dhabi next March, pilots of the Solar Impulse 2 (Si2) will conduct test flights and perform fine-tuning exercises this January, in preparation for the five month journey. The plane, and its two co-founders, will attempt to fly around the world – without a drop of fuel – only using the power of the sun.

Masdar, Abu Dhabi's renewable energy company, is an official host partner of Si2 and Abu Dhabi will be the location of the plane's departure and arrival.

"It's fitting that we're departing from Abu Dhabi," said Bertrand Piccard, chairman, initiator and pilot of Si2, "as the emirate is a true energy leader committed to realising a cleaner tomorrow. Through initiatives like Masdar, Abu Dhabi is demonstrating a real commitment to diversifying the global energy mix with clean, reliable renewable energy." Preparations are well under way for the planes arrival in Abu Dhabi, ahead of the five-month round-the-world flight.

"With less than 6 months until departure, we can feel the pressure. The plane must be tested and the entire flight path, including all landing permissions, organised," explains Andre Borschberg, co-founder and pilot of Si2. "We couldn't have wished for a better host city in Abu Dhabi, given its location, state of the art facilities and the fantastic support we've received so far." The announcement of Abu Dhabi as the host city and Masdar's partnership with Si2 was made during the UN Climate Summit last month in New York.

"The departure of Solar Impulse – and its journey around the world – is a historic event that Abu Dhabi will play an important role in," said Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, chairman of Masdar. "In fact, Solar Impulse and Masdar share a common goal of advancing renewable energy and innovative clean technologies. More importantly, we aim to also inspire future generations to explore new horizons and push the boundaries of science and technology.

Si2 will be assembled in Abu Dhabi at a specially designated location where safety tests and training will also be undertaken. The plane will be showcased during the World Future Energy Summit, as part of the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, January 17-24, when the public will have the opportunity to view the plane and meet the pilots.

"As a previous guest and speaker during the World Future Energy Summit," said Piccard, "I've seen first-hand Abu Dhabi's commitment to advancing clean technology, creating social opportunity and extending its energy leadership through the acceleration of wind and solar power. Abu Dhabi is truly the ideal location for our safe departure, and hopefully, arrival." The round-the-world flight will take approximately five months, with stops expected in Asia, the United States, Southern Europe or North Africa, before returning to Abu Dhabi in July 2015. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


Security Media upgrades its drones to full HD technology

posted on 26/10/2014

The Security Media Department at the General Secretariat of the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, upgraded the technical specifications of its remote-controlled flying drones, which were put to use in 2010, as now they are able to capture Full HD footage for media coverage.

According to Major Jamal Al Hosani, Chief of Technical Affairs Section at the Security Media and Technical Affairs Department, the project, which is being developed by local experts, aims to showcase the strategic role of the Abu Dhabi Police General Headquarters, and provide other logistic services, mainly lowering the risks that may face police officers and media professionals on accident sites. This will also help develop policing systems and methods for handling emergencies, to promote security and safety earnings using modern and innovative methods, to elevate the police work system and its new concepts, in accordance with the vision of the U.A.E. government.

Major Al Hosani said, "The Technical Affairs Department has introduced new technical specifications for its fleet of 7 unmanned drones, to include capturing footage of hard-to-reach areas such as traffic accidents, fires, and major events using Full HD video technology, which provides a resolution that is substantially higher than that of the previously used Standard Definition (SD). The drones are equipped with dual day / night cameras to capture the most accurate details, as well as a zooming feature for filming footage from a very far distance." He also noted that the newly updated drones provide leaders with a unique airborne perspective of the incident via live streaming, through special applications available for the Security Media field patrols; they transmit the captured footage directly to the Central Operations' Room, and allow officials to follow up on the unfolding of the events with a view to take the proper decisions.

The remote-controlled flying drones provide media support for the Security Media field patrols, which were recently launched to cover the events that take place on the roads of Abu Dhabi around the clock. They transmit footage simultaneously to maximise the media coverage.

The service provided by both the drones and the Security Media patrols contribute to developing the Ministry of Interior's media work. It also ensures documentation of security events, provides help to media workers, and supports media coverage of police events with more comprehensive, faster and higher quality footage. It has a storage capacity to save photographs and videos that can be easily retrieved when needed.

Speaking about the crew that operates the remote-controlled unmanned drone, the project director said, "The crew that operates the drone is made up of qualified national cadres (An operator and a controller per drone) to handle accidents at sites that may pose a risk to civilians, making it possible to obtain accurate and detailed footage of the events".

Major Al Hosani enumerated the general specifications of the drone. "The drone is a small unpiloted aerial vehicle remotely and easily controlled and stable during flight. Using the on-board camera, the drone captures footage and still photographs of various events from all angles with High-definition television (HDTV) resolution technology. It can also receive images and zooms in on them through a special monitor designed for media tasks," he added.

Adding further, Major Al Hosani noted that drone has been equipped for take-off and flight. "Upon receiving notification from the Central Operations Room, the operator dispatches the drone towards the incident site. Prior to that, the controller contacts the competent authorities to obtain necessary approvals to fly the drone and cover events on the ground or in high areas as they unfold," Major Al Hosani explained.

The head of the Technical Affairs Department stressed the pivotal role of the Security Media drone, which sheds light on the humanitarian and social aspects of police work, through an integrated technical perspective. "This reflects the Ministry of Interior's commitment to promote the standards of openness and transparency of the media message. It also embodies the ministry's firm belief in the right of media outlets and the public to be informed to ensure everyone's safety," underlined Major Al Hosani.

Furthermore, he added, "The project comes in response to the directives of the police leadership, and reflects their keen interest to ensure public safety and transparency as one of the top priorities of the police's media work. The police leadership is also keen to leverage modern devices and technologies to enhance the competencies of police personnel working in this field, in a bid to achieve the coveted goals through various modern and innovative methods. It also aims to upgrade policing work methods and its new concepts, which is not only limited to keeping up with events, but to be at the heart of events". – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


The U.A.E. Drones for Good Award signs a Memorandum of Understanding with Microsoft

posted on 26/10/2014

As part of its continued efforts to strengthening partnerships with major international organisations, the U.A.E. Drones for Good Award has signed a memorandum of understanding with Microsoft, marking yet another step towards the global expansion of the Award. This Gulf have announced their partnership with the United Arab Emirate's Ministry of Cabinet Affairs for the Drones for Good (DFG) Award initiative which leverages unmanned aerial vehicles for civilian and humanitarian purposes. This partnership will also help create additional applications for these drones which will provide enhanced services to people and humanity.

The Award which is the first of its kind and the largest in size, launched by Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, during the U.A.E. Government Summit in 2014.The Award stems from the idea of honouring innovations that contribute to the recruitment of IT UAVs in the development of government services and provide value-added services to improve human life, and is divided into two local prize worth Dh 1 million, and international value of US$ 1 million.

As part of the partnership, Microsoft will promote the competition to Imagine Cup participants from across universities in U.A.E., Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait, and Qatar effective immediately until April 2015. The Drones for Good program under academia will also provide access to Microsoft's DreamSpark software to all competitors, where five full days of trainings will be provided to the students on app development for drone usage and applications, in addition to two full days of training on leveraging Azure for drones.

Speaking on the occasion of the signing, Saif Al Aleeli , U.A.E. Drones For Good Award Project Manager said, "Drones for Good Award is devoted to creating new partnerships and further the current ones with global organisations specialised in technology and innovation, in a way that achieves the major aims of the award which highlight deploying unmanned aerial vehicles in all aspects that lead to facilitating lives or overcoming the challenges humans face anywhere around the world. This covers all fields and aspects that are closely related to our daily lives." He also added, "Microsoft is one of the global leaders in innovation and software as well as providing software solutions. Being among the partners of this award is no doubt an added value for both the local and international facets of the award. We also welcome all global organisations to participate in supporting the global humanitarian goal of this award that His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has launched to serve the global community." Commenting on the partnership with the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs for the Drones for Good Awards, Samer Abu Ltaif, Microsoft Gulf's Regional General Manager said, "We are very proud to be serving His Highness's vision to make life easier for the U.A.E.'s citizens and residents through drone technology. At Microsoft, we believe in the power of our technology to inspire innovation and we are committed to enabling people to do more through technology that is scalable and secure. We are confident that through the sustainable Microsoft networks of Imagine Cup, the reach for the Drones for Good Award will continue to thrive and youth will become more involved in contributing to the future services. We are committed to supporting the U.A.E.'s continual quest to be the number one country in delivering services, and are confident that Microsoft technology will act as a key enabler to this vision." The partnership, which was announced at an exclusive signing ceremony attended by representatives of both parties, entails that Microsoft will support the Award through exploring the human and civil applications of drones, as part of its "Imagine Cup" student competition in the Gulf region, which encourages students to use technology to solve the world's toughest problems.

As part of the agreement, Microsoft will promote Award during the Imagine Cup competition between participants from different universities in the U.A.E., Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar with immediate effect and until April 2015 and will provide Microsoft participants in the aircraft program drone in academia access to the program Dream Spark program, which provides training courses for students for five consecutive days on the development of the application of unmanned aircraft and its uses delivered with two additional days of training to allow students to take advantage of how to use the program to build applications.

The aim of U.A.E. Cabinet and The Prime Minister's office is to make U.A.E. the first in the world in adopting drones for government services, humanitarian causes, health, education and safety. The U.A.E. cabinet is now working on finalising the first national drones policy in the world in coming months. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


U.A.E. vaccinates more than 13 million children against polio in Pakistan: U.A.E. PAP

posted on 26/10/2014

ISLAM ABAD: The U.A.E. vaccinated more than 13.2 million children in Pakistan against polio between June and September 2014 as part of a campaign set up following directives from President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, on an initiative by His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of U.A.E. Armed Forces. The effort is part of the U.A.E. government's 2013 pledge of Dh440 million to support global efforts in eradicating polio by 2018, with a specific contribution towards Afghanistan and Pakistan, according to the U.A.E. Pakistan Assistance Programme, U.A.E. PAP, in its announcement of the final results of the massive immunisation drive.

During the U.A.E.'s four-month effort to combat the deadly infectious disease, 13,238,701 Pakistani children were vaccinated, of whom10,235,995 were in 25 areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and 3,447,706 in the tribal regions, said Abdullah Khalifa Al Ghafli, Director of the U.A.E PAP, adding that the campaign was carried out on schedule and accompanied by an educational campaign about the disease.

As of 22 October 2014, Pakistan reported 210 cases of paralysis caused by wild poliovirus in 2014. This is the highest number of cases on record through October in any year, and accounts for more than 85% of all cases worldwide, according to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, a public-private partnership led by national governments and spearheaded by the World Health Organisation, WHO, the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, and the United Nations Children's Fund, Unicef, and other agencies.

In September alone, more than 5.2 million children were vaccinated against the disease in 11 areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and some 2.4 million children in the tribal regions, noted Al Ghafli.

U.A.E. PAP carried out the massive immunisation drive in cooperation with the Pakistan army and ministry of health, the World Health Organisation, W.H.O, and regional governments.

Programme officials said that between 7-19 June, nearly five thousand teams worked intensively in nine areas in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and in 12 areas in tribal regions, to vaccinate more than two and a half million children under five years old against polio at health centres in local communities and using mobile units which travelled to remote areas.

On 24th April 2013, one day ahead of the Global Vaccine Summit in Abu Dhabi, His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan pledged a donation of Dh440 million to support global efforts to eradicate polio by 2018.

As he announced the pledge, H.H. Sheikh Mohammad said, "Saving generations of children from preventable diseases is a humanitarian initiative that can only be achieved through global collaboration. Under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the U.A.E. strives to engage in global partnerships that solve these significant international issues." Al Ghafli, Director of the U.A.E. Pakistan Assistance Programme, said the polio vaccination campaign further recognises U.A.E.'s humanitarian efforts under the wise leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and proves that the country's initiatives to assist poor countries facing serious humanitarian conditions contribute to the effective building and development of communities for a brighter future.

He described the campaign as an "exceptional success", not least since remote areas pose a large challenge for the effort to erase polio in Pakistan – 95 per cent of the country's polio cases in the past six months were reported in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region. "All previous local and international polio vaccination campaigns failed to reach these areas," he added.

Al Ghafli noted that the ongoing U.A.E. polio campaign has overcome geography, which posed a serious challenge, as all previous local and international polio vaccination campaigns failed to reach these areas, which accounted for 95% of Pakistan's polio cases in the past six months, resulting in the wider spreading of the disease into other areas.

Al Ghafli also noted that sound planning and well-organised implementation were instrumental in the success of the campaign, which received a wide response from the local communities and regional governments who reiterated their confidence in U.A.E. and the humanitarian initiatives launched by its leadership for the good of their children.

The local residents of the targeted Pakistani areas, who expressed their thanks and appreciation for all the efforts of H.H. Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and H.H. Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, described the polio campaign as a welcome initiative by a Muslim and friendly country to vaccinate their children.

Ala Alwan, World Health Organisation Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean, said, "The U.A.E.'s support for the polio vaccination campaign in Pakistan, following directives from its wise leaders and the initiative of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, stands out as a model for solidarity that should prevail in the international community in the field of combating diseases and epidemics that know no geographic borders and indiscriminately hit all people alike.

The W.H.O. official thanked U.A.E. for its generous initiative and said he was looking forward to seeing it expand into other affected regions and attract other countries to join these humanitarian efforts for a better future and provide healthier lives for children. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


U.A.E.'s Red Crescent donates Dh3.6m for treating Palestinian, Syrian cancer patients in Jordan

posted on 26/10/2014

The Emirates Red Crescent, ERC, has donated more than Dh3.6 million to Jordan's King Hussein Cancer Foundation, KHCF, for treating Palestinian and Syrian cancer patients at the King Hussein Cancer Centre, KHCC, the foundation's medical arm.

According to an agreement signed Friday by ERC and KHCF, under the directives of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler's Representative in the Western Region and President of ERC, half of the financial assistance will benefit Syrian refugees suffering from cancer.

The agreement, signed Friday in Abu Dhabi by HRH Princess Dina Mired, Director-General of KHCF, and Mohammed Ateeq Al Falahi, Secretary-General of ERC, established the framework and mechanisms for cooperation between the two agencies in mitigating the suffering of targeted patients.

The agreement also expands the standing partnerships between ERC and KHCF on providing assistance to tens of Palestinian children who have been diagnosed with cancer.

In his remarks during the signing ceremony, Al Falahi reiterated ERC's keen interest in launching initiatives aimed at providing healthcare for society's most vulnerable populations.

On her part, HRH Princess Dina noted that ERC is among the main supporters of KHCF.

"The good efforts of ERC reflects its interest in improving the health conditions and protecting the dignity of vulnerable people," Princess Dina added.

KHCF is an independent, non-governmental, not-for-profit institution founded in 1997 by a Royal Decree to combat cancer in Jordan and the Middle East region. As the country's largest community-based organisation fully dedicated to combating cancer in Jordan, it is involved in fundraising and development through a wide variety of programs and activities, global work to raise concerns about cancer issues within the global community, and supporting patients, the underprivileged and vulnerable people, in particular, to ensure that each patient's individual needs are met financially, emotionally and spiritually. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


Cabinet launches 'U.A.E. Legislations' app for iPhone, Android smartphones

posted on 26/10/2014

The U.A.E. Cabinet has launched "U.A.E. Legislations", a new smartphone app featuring 270 of the federal legislations under 21 main entries (topics) including the full text of the Constitution of the U.A.E., the personal status law, and the penal, civil, commercial, financial, investment, human resources, education and research, social security and pensions legislations and their amendments.

The new app was developed by the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs in line with the government's efforts to embrace the shift to smart services targeting all segments of the public, and to provide smooth access into the country's legislations.

The free and user-friendly app enables users from government entities, private organisations, lawyers, legal experts and scholar, members of the media and researchers, to easily access and browse the searchable database through an attractive interface.

It also features sections such as "Search", "Favourites", "FAQs", "Help" and "Contact Us", and alerts the user to any amendments to the contents in the favourite items.

Users can copy and print the legislations and share them through emails or SMS text messages.

The app is available for download from the App Store for iPhones, and from Google Play Store for Android-powered devices.

It is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch and is optimised for iPhone 5. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


Drydocks World to carry out major repair on rig "High Island IV" for Shelf Drilling

posted on 26/10/2014

Drydocks World, the international service provider to the shipping, maritime, offshore, oil, gas, and energy sectors, has been chosen to carry out the drydocking and repairs of the jack-up "High Island IV" for Shelf Drilling, one of the major players in the shallow water drilling market, and owners of 40 rigs worldwide.

Drydocks World-Dubai has a successful past with Shelf Drilling, previously completing a variety of work on six of their rigs, ranging from Saudi Aramco specifications to major upgrades and re-activation. The contract signing for the "High Island IV" was held in Dubai Maritime City in the presence of Khamis Juma Buamim, Chairman of Drydocks World and Maritime World, and Mr. Kurt Hoffman, Chief Operating Officer of Shelf Drilling, in addition to senior management staff from both companies. The signing of this contract exemplifies the confidence Shelf Drilling has in Drydocks World to deliver the highest standards of operational excellence, based on the proven successful previous delivery of jack-up rigs with optimum cost control measurements within agreed timeline schedules, keeping safety and quality as the top priority in all of Drydocks World's projects. The Drydocks World Rig Division has successfully delivered many projects and is working on implementing an action plan to be the regions full service destination to all offshore work requirements and engineering solutions.

Under Drydocks World's outstanding leadership policies, Drydocks World has become one of the best service providers in the world for ship repair, conversion and new building projects, continually transforming the business to channel the organizations focus and vision towards achieving further success. Such success is evident from the turnaround of rigs being repaired and delivered at the Drydocks World-Dubai yard, with 35 rigs successfully refurbished and repaired in the last 3 years, including two re-activation projects.

Buamim stressed the importance of maintaining a strong commitment to providing services which meet the highest international standards in the field of operational excellence. Commenting on Drydocks World success, Buamim stated, "We have already surpassed the target set for this year in terms of orders for rig drydocking, repairs, and refurbishment. We look forward to increasing our achievements as we embark on another project with Shelf Drilling, furthering our strategic alliance, and continuing to provide services which adhere to the highest standards in international operational excellence." – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


Al Mansouri, Belarus Foreign Minister discuss ways of strengthening economic, trade relations

posted on 26/10/2014

Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy, on Wednesday met Vladimir Makei, Belarus Foreign Minister, to explore ways of strengthening bilateral relations between the two friendly countries in the areas of economy, trade and investment.

During the meeting which took place at the economy ministry's office in Dubai, the two parties discussed prospects for stepping up cooperation between the business communities of the two countries.

Al Mansouri offered the Belarus visiting minister a brief on the advances in the U.A.E. economy, highlighting its open policies, strategic location and position as a global re-export hub. He pointed out that the enabling incentives provided to investors such as zero taxation and state-of-the-art infrastructure make the U.A.E. an ideal market for Belarusian investments and industries.

The ministry of economy said Al Mansouri will lead a high level economic and trade delegation to Belarus in December to seek to boost relations and explore available investment and cooperation opportunities.

On his part, the Belarus minister commended the U.A.E.'s achievements and its important stature in the international economic scene.

Expressing his country's keenness to build strategic economic relations with the U.A.E., Minister Makey offered an overview of Belarus' economic reforms and that new opportunities that this had opened up for friendly countries such the U.A.E.

Minister Makei welcomed Al Mansouri to Belarus saying the U.A.E. delegation's visit will cement the bilateral relationship shared by the two friendly countries. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


‘Emirati LaunchPad’ to assist UAE nationals in doing business

posted on 26/10/2014

Impact Hub Dubai, in partnership with Dubai SME — the agency of the Department of Economic Development in Dubai mandated to develop the small and medium enterprise sector — and the Hamdan Innovation Incubator, or HI2, have launched the first "Emirati LaunchPad”, a free, two-month programme that will equip UAE national entrepreneurs with the knowledge, skills and contacts required to launch a business idea and to begin trading anywhere in the world.

The first LaunchPad, which was oversubscribed, kicked off The Impact Hub Dubai, with over 50 aspiring Emiratis participating. It will conclude in December, with a second programme scheduled for the New Year.

The Emirati LaunchPad will offer the opportunity to incubate a business idea through workshops, mentoring, potential for funding and a creative space to work. They will also be able to interact with a global entrepreneur and innovator community of over 9,000 "Hubsters” in over 70 global locations, and gain inspiration and guidance in a unique programme designed especially for UAE nationals.

"Dubai SME is delighted to be a strategic partner in Emirati Launchpad as we see it as an initiative well-aligned to our strategy for nurturing entrepreneurial talent. At Dubai SME, we have incubated over 350 SMEs and with our Hamdan Innovation Incubator initiative, the entrepreneurial support system in Dubai has expanded further. The Emirati LaunchPad allows us to share our SME development resources with a wider community,” said Abdul Baset Al Janahi, chief executive officer of Dubai SME.

Aman Merchant, chief executive officer of Impact Hub Dubai, said: "The UAE offers great commercial opportunities and is a melting pot of entrepreneurism. Disruptive ideas can arise anywhere, and given the right environment, can grow rapidly into successful businesses. Our ambition is to not only help to realise the dreams of starting a business here in the UAE, but also to offer the chance to become international businesses in their own right, through our global network of Hubs in more than 75 locations around the world. We are delighted thus to announce this pioneering LaunchPad for Emirati entrepreneurs, the first of several initiatives that we are going to launch over the next few months that allows us to showcase our triad capability of part-campus, part-incubator and part-innovation lab under a single roof.” – Khaleej Times -§ion=uaebusiness


Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque welcomes 1.2 million worshippers and visitors in Q3 2014

posted on 26/10/2014

The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque (SZGM) in Abu Dhabi received over 1.2 million worshippers and visitors during the third quarter of 2014. Of these, 873,000 were worshippers and 344,000 were visitors.

A huge number of visitors to the U.A.E. in general and Abu Dhabi in particular, visit the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, as it represents a unique model of Islamic Architecture, art and decoration and is a cultural and tourist landmark.

The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Centre has prepared an integrated strategic plan to entertain the visitors, for which it organises daily cultural tours conducted by well-qualified Emirati tourist guides. The Centre also provides pioneering and distinguished services for the visitors, and follows sophisticated policies and modern standards.

As part of its role to promote awareness about rich cultural heritage and religious values, the SZGM has started a series of lectures, organised on a weekly basis, and also cooperates with the Abu Dhabi Media to broadcast these lectures on the Abu Dhabi Al Oula Satellite Channel and Abu Dhabi Al Emarat Channel. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


Abu Dhabi International Airport sees 24% increase in traffic for September 2014

posted on 26/10/2014

Abu Dhabi Airports, a public joint-stock company wholly owned by the Government of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, has reported a 23.9% increase in passenger traffic during the month of September as compared to September 2013.

The airport's passenger statistics showed that 1,696,651 passengers used the airport during the month, growing from 1,369,051 in September 2013. Aircraft movements increased to 13,070 in September 2014, recording 14.9% growth when compared with 11,379 movements logged in September 2013.

Cargo activity handling rose to 67,881 tonnes representing a 9.6% increase when compared to 61,913 tonnes in September 2013.

Commenting on the latest passenger figures, Ahmad Al Haddabi, Chief Operations Officer at Abu Dhabi Airports, said, "Once again, Abu Dhabi International Airport delivered a strong performance in passenger traffic with significant growth compared with last year. This was mainly due to the end of the summer holidays that coincided with the Hajj season, which occurred in September this year. Increased activity by Etihad Airways' new partner airlines Air Berlin, Jet Airways and Air Seychelles also had a positive impact." The top five routes from Abu Dhabi International Airport during September were Doha, London, Bangkok, Manila and Bombay. The top five routes accounted for 15% of all traffic.

Al Haddabi added, "Abu Dhabi International Airport is set to become one of the fastest growing aviation hubs in the world and this is supported by the numbers. Total passenger movements during the first 9 months of the year (January to September) were 14,803,324, representing an increase of 20.9% against the same period of the year 2013." Within the next few years, over 30 million passengers are expected to use Abu Dhabi International Airport as their origin, destination or transit point for international and domestic flights. The Midfield Terminal Complex (MTC), Abu Dhabi Airports' iconic expansion project, is being constructed to handle increasing passenger traffic. Meanwhile, the airports has implemented a Capacity Enhancement Programme with several key infrastructure projects already delivered to provide the intermediate capacity that will be needed to meet the increase in demand before the Midfield Terminal Building becomes operational. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –


Jumeirah Corniche will be linked with the Walk of Dubai Water Canal

posted on 26/10/2014

The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) will on Sunday, 26th October, fully open the Jumeirah Corniche stretching 14 kilometres at the beach overlooking six residential communities starting from the backyard of the Dubai Marine Beach Resort up to Burj Al Arab Hotel.

The Corniche consists of a 5 meter-wide walk, a 4 meter-wide jogging track, and relaxation areas comprising retail kiosks, shaded benches overlooking the sea, and public hygiene. The project boasts of a fascinating scenic view through well looked-after landscaped areas developed and spread in an elegant way together with stylish decorative lighting.

Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the RTA, was pleased with the completion of this vital project in implementation of the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to bring happiness to people, as HH considers sport an important element in building the community and a key ingredient of healthy individuals capable of making a difference.

Al Tayer called on the public and residents of the neighbourhood who fancy walking and jogging to use the Jumeirah Corniche in practicing their favourite sports. The Jumeirah Corniche project, he says, hugs the sand beach and offers a vibrant environment fitted with aesthetic and recreational features as well as public utilities for the use of beach goers amongst residents and tourists flocking to Dubai beaches to enjoy sitting by the seaside or practicing walking and jogging sports.

"The Jumeirah Corniche is considered a gorgeous addition to the area offering relaxation and relief and greater opportunity for the public to enjoy and practice several activities in addition to high-class service facilities for citizens, residents and tourists to enjoy a time out, swim or practice sport. Besides its practical value, the venue is a dazzling recreational facility boasting of a specific importance as it contributes to upgrading the social infrastructure of the Emirate in terms of quality public health of the community, offering ample opportunities for practicing jogging, walking and aquatic sports such as swimming, rowing, and other activities befitting all family members and contributing to their physical wellbeing and the public health.

"The Jumeirah Corniche will be linked at a later stage with the Walk and the jogging/walking tracks of the Dubai Water Canal; a new urban destination in the making for the regional and international tourist movement as well as for the populace of the Emirate. The Canal, which links the Business Bay with the Arabian Gulf, will add 6 km to the Dubai Waterfront. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –