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Mohammed bin Rashid visits space exhibition

posted on 27/11/2015

Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has stressed that space science and technology are part of the culture and ambitions of the UAE and that new generations should be raised on this passion.

H.H. Sheikh Mohammed was speaking during a visit to an exhibition of satellites, including DubaiSat-1 and DubaiSat-2, and space technology and rockets. The show is being held by the Dubai Executive Council and the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC). Workshops for Emirati space engineers were also organised as part of the "Space is Our Destination" exhibition, held as part of the UAE Innovation Week, held between 22-28 November.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said, "Emirati space engineers are a model for our children and Arab youth. We are proud of them. The UAE space project is not only a technological project but a national project that is aimed at preparing human resources that will be able to keep pace with future developments and drive the UAE to another stage of growth and competitiveness with other countries in all areas of technology."

Sheikh Mohammed toured the space show and viewed miniatures of Emirati satellites and attended discussions at workshops on CubeSat mission, a nanosatellite offering hands-on experience to engineering students in the design, integration, testing, and operation of a communications satellite aimed at helping students join the UAE space industry.

He also visited a mobile space research lab, designed for schools students aged between 5-11 years, and interactive planetarium and observatory which feature highly precise telescopes.

H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid was accompanied during his tour by senior officials including Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister for Cabinet Affairs and Chairman of the National Committee of Science, Technology and Innovation, Khalifa Saeed Sulaiman, Director-General of the Department of Protocol and Hospitality in Dubai, Abdullah Al Shaibani, Secretary-General of Dubai Executive Council and Member of the UAE Innovation Week, Hamad Obaid Al Mansouri, Director-General of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (RTA) and others.


Abu Dhabi prepares extensive programme for 44th National Day celebrations

posted on 27/11/2015

Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, TCA Abu Dhabi, has unveiled plans to mark this year's National Day celebrations with a spectacular range of events across the emirate.

Celebrations for the 44th National Day, which falls on December 2nd, began last Thursday and will run until December 5th, as the nation comes together to celebrate the theme of ‘Spirit of the Union' and national identity, with events staged in key locations in Abu Dhabi city, Al Ain and in the Western Region.

"On the country's 44th National Day, we are proud to work together with our partners across the emirate to deliver this impressive and diverse programme of events," said Faisal Al Sheikh, Director Events Bureau, TCA Abu Dhabi. "It will be as entertaining as it is inclusive and we are confident we will engage everyone within Abu Dhabi with celebratory events for locals, citizens and visitors alike."

The 14 days celebrations, organised by TCA Abu Dhabi and a host of public, private and community stakeholders, include firework displays, car parades, athletic and interactive cultural events, traditional folklore shows, musical concerts, art and history exhibitions as well as Armed Forces displays.

A succession of National Day concerts featuring some of the most prominent Emirati, Arab and Arabian Gulf singers will run for three nights from December 1st and will take place at the Zayed Heritage Festival in Al Wathba, Abu Dhabi, and on December 2nd and 3rd at the Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium, on Dec 2nd at Hili Fun City in Al Ain and on Dec 2nd and 3rd in the Western Region at Dalma Island, Al Sila'a and Madinat Zayed, with all concerts starting at 9pm until midnight. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


RTA prepares 1, 000 flags to adorn main streets in celebration of UAE’s 44th National Day

posted on 27/11/2015

The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has unveiled the Events Plan for UAE's 44th National Day celebrations, as it readies to roll out an array of fabulous and diverse activities befitting the glamour of this national celebration.

"The National Day is an extravaganza of love and loyalty to our prized nation, and RTA has prepared, as usual each year, a host of events depicting our belonging and devotion to our nation," said Moaza Al Marri, Director of RTA's Marketing & Corporate Communication, Corporate Administrative Support Services Sector.

"RTA will don main streets in the Emirate with 1000 pieces of national flags that will also be used to wrap 44 taxicabs, 10 bus stops, Dubai World Trade Centre station, and 3 buses, in addition to one Abra, one Ferry and one Water Taxi. 400 national flags will be placed on RTA HQ, premises of Public Transport Agency, and the main customers' service centre. Further, 44 kiosks will take the shape of the number 44. Events include a workshop for painting UAE map using the flag colours, in addition to a corner for therapeutic herbs & perfumes used in the past among other heritage events and activities," added Al Marri.

"Events will include traditional tents erected at nearby metro stations offering traditional dishes, gifts and fun activities to entertain children. Gifts will also be distributed to visitors of customers' service centres and driving institutes. A buffet for traditional cuisines will be held at RTA's HQ along with fun events such as the outdoor traditional kitchen. The traditional bands (Ayyala and Harbiyya) will also chant patriotic songs.

"RTA's participation is part of its pride in a nation worthy of loyalty as we are all indebted to its blessings, security and safety. The UAE will remain a priceless jewel in our hearts worthy of every sacrifice on earth under the leadership of the best ever dynasty," added Al Marri in a concluding remark. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Sultan Al Qasimi signs MoU between Sharjah Research Academy and University of Queensland

posted on 27/11/2015

H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, yesterday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), between the Sharjah Research Academy and University of Queensland, to enhance educational and academic co-operation.

Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, Director of the Global Change Institute at University of Queensland signed the MoU on behalf of the university. Under the MoU, the two parties will co-operate in scientific studies of the oceans and coastal areas, water sustainability, food system domains, and renewable and clean energy systems by carrying out joint research and scientists and researchers exchange, as well as organising joint academic programmes between the two sides.

Dr. Amr Abdul Hamid, Director of the Sharjah Research Academy, said that the MoU was within the framework of Sharjah's keenness to benefit from the expertise of global research and academic institutions aiming to enhance research work at the academy.

Hoegh-Guldberg expressed his happiness as the growth being witnessed by the Emirate of Sharjah in particular, and the UAE in general. He also confirmed that the MoU will open up more areas for co-operation in the future, especially since the university is interested in transferring its expertise globally and also benefitting from the experiences of the Sharjah Academy for Research. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE national pavilion at 56th 'La Biennale Di Venezia' closes exhibition

posted on 27/11/2015

VENICE: The National Pavilion United Arab Emirates la Biennale di Venezia have closed their exhibition, 1980 – Today: Exhibitions in the United Arab Emirates, marking the end of the 56th International Art Exhibition. The exhibition is now due to travel to the UAE, where it will be hosted by the Sharjah Art Foundation from February 20th until May 20th 2016.

The 56th International Art Exhibition - la Biennale di Venezia ran from May 9 – November 22, 2015 and received over 500,000 visitors.

The National Pavilion UAE is commissioned by the Salama bint Hamdan Al Nahyan Foundation and supported by the UAE Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development. The exhibition was presented in the UAE's permanent pavilion in the Arsenale – Sale d'Armi.

Curated by Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi, President and Director of the Sharjah Art Foundation, 1980 – Today: Exhibitions in the United Arab Emirates was a retrospective on contemporary art exhibitions in the Emirates over the last 40 years. Through an unprecedented grouping of over 100 works, Sheikha Hoor structured the exhibition to create dialogues between artists and across practices, highlighting the diversity and the history of the art scene in the UAE.

The exhibition featured work by fifteen Emirati artists: Ahmed Al Ansari, Moosa Al Halyan, Mohammed Al Qassab, Abdul Qader Al Rais, Abdullah Al Saadi, Mohammed Abdullah Bulhiah, Salem Jawhar, Mohammed Kazem, Dr. Najat Meky, Abdulraheem Salim, Ahmed Sharif, Hassan Sharif, Obaid Suroor, Dr. Mohamed Yousif, and Abdulrahman Zainal.

"For our fourth exhibition at the International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia we were delighted to have worked with curator Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi," said H.H. Sheikha Salama bint Hamdan Al Nahyan, Founder of the Salama bint Hamdan Al Nahyan Foundation and the Commissioner of the National Pavilion UAE. "Thanks to her vision we were able to share essential works from this key period in the UAE's art scene as well as to build links for future generations. I applaud her contributions to the development and advancement of the larger discourse on art from the region."

Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi's research relied heavily on the public archives of the Emirates Fine Art Society (EFAS), a non-profit association formed in 1980 in Sharjah, which has long served as a galvanizing incubator for the UAE's art scene. The archives included a trove of English and Arabic books on visual arts, theatre and literature, as well as catalogues, photo albums and copies of Al Tashkeel, EFAS's quarterly newsletter, which has been published since the 1980s.

A publication on the exhibition featuring a series of essays and contributions by Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi and some of the participating artists, as well as some archive material, is now available for sale online on Koening Books' website (order #1536407).

1980 – Today: Exhibitions in the United Arab Emirates will now return to the UAE where it will be hosted at the Sharjah Art Foundation between February 20th – May 20th. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE becomes first Middle Eastern country to participate in the World SME Expo next month

posted on 27/11/2015

The United Arab Emirates will be the first country from the Middle East to participate in the World SME Expo, which is being held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre from 3-5 December, with a pavilion organised by the UAE Ministry of Economy in cooperation with the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) and with the Integration Initiative of the Abu Dhabi Technology Development Committee (TDC).

Thirty-five participants are part of the UAE delegation including fifteen Emirati inventors, who will display their projects within the country's pavilion, as well as representatives from the Dubai Export Development Corporation, Dubai Economic Council, the Department of Economic Development, Sharjah Economic Development Department, the United Arab Emirates University, Abu Dhabi University and a number of private sector companies.

The UAE's delegation will be led by Abdullah bin Ahmed Al Saleh, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade and Industry Affairs, which also includes representatives from each of the Integration Initiative of the TDC and the HKTDC, and a number of government agencies and the private sector in the country, as well as an elite of Emirati inventors and innovators.


President of Yemen hails ERC efforts in Aden, neighbouring governorates

posted on 27/11/2015

ADEN: President of Yemen, Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi, has commended Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) for providing basic needs, including water and electricity, as well as renovating schools and hospitals in Aden and the neighbouring Yemen's governorates.

The Houthi militia and Saleh group have inflicted huge damage across the country.

President Hadi made the remarks yesterday while chairing the meeting attended by Major General Ja'far Mohammed Saad, Governor of Aden, Dr. Ahmed Mahdi Fadhil, Governor of Lahij, Dr. Khidr Al Saeedi, Governor of Abyn, and Mohammed Al Ja'di, Governor of Al Dalea.

They discussed difficulties faced by the governorates in terms of services, infrastructure and security.

President Hadi urged them to double the field work to restore the services and normalise life in their various governorates.


Yemenia Airlines resumes flights from Aden International Airport

posted on 27/11/2015

ADEN: Yemenia Airlines announced yesterday it has resumed the first flight out of Aden International Airport to the Jordanian capital, Amman, with 156 passengers on board.

The official Yemen News Agency, said after a 10-month hiatus, due to the war against the Houthi rebels, the first commercial flight was launched from the port city of Aden to Amman in Jordan.

It quoted Eng. Tariq Abdou, Director of Aden International Airport, as saying that the resumption of the flights from and to Aden Airport, "comes after efforts exerted by the political leadership and competent authorities in co-ordination with the UAE and the company in charge of rehabilitation of the Aden Airport."


Etihad Airways honoured for excellence in communications organisation at CACS Award 2015

posted on 27/11/2015

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, yesterday received an award for excellence in communications for news contributions and media coverage in China at the 2015 Civil Aviation Communications Summit (CACS).

The only foreign carrier nominated, Etihad Airways was selected winner of the Excellence in Communications Organisation Award at the CACS Summit 2015 at the Landmark Convention Centre in Beijing, organised by Hanglian Communications and its trade platforms and, for "the tremendous efforts and contributions it has made to the industry".

The final results were tabulated by an editorial panel including a dozen highly-experienced industry analysts and experts. Etihad Airways scored the highest marks on trade media coverage among all monitored foreign carriers operating in China.

During the evaluation phase, the panel looked at numerous aspects including but not limited to the number of press releases, the amount of photo and video content distributed, the accuracy and timelines of corporate press translations, online media coverage (third-party monitored platforms and search engine listings), as well as the number of page views and unique IP visitor and reader comment statistics on trade media platforms owned and operated by Hanglian Communications.

Zheng Hongfeng, CEO of Hanglian Communications, commented: "We sincerely congratulate Etihad Airways as the only foreign carrier recipient of the Excellence in Communication Organisation Award presented at the 2015 Civil Aviation Communications Summit. Being China's leading air transport information provider, we are always willing to assist foreign airlines enhance their brand promotions and local communications in China. Etihad Airways, the national carrier of the United Arab Emirates, has been achieving outstanding results on many fronts including brand innovations and promotions as well as corporate press distribution and localisation."

Hareb Al Muhairy, Etihad Airways' Senior Vice President Corporate and International Affairs, said: "We are delighted to receive the CACS Award. We have great stories to tell. And we are keen to communicate with our stakeholders in China.

"Etihad Airways first entered the Greater China market in 2008 with the launch of daily flights to Beijing. This was followed by Chengdu in 2011, Shanghai in 2012 and Hong Kong in 2015. We are seeking to grow in China through various means in line with existing and potential future bilateral rights. We believe that there is huge potential in the Greater China market, given our unique geographic position as a transiting hub to China facilitating the government's ‘Belt and Road' initiatives.

"I would also like to thank our partners in China for their support in the successful development of our services in here. We look forward to working with them more closely to bring the same kind of mutual benefit and growth that we have achieved with our partners in other parts of the world."

Photo caption: Shane O' Hare, Etihad Airways' Senior Vice President Marketing, accepted the Excellence in Communications Organisation Award at the 2015 Civil Aviation Communications Summit in Beijing. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Emirates’ Operations in India: a US$848 million impact on GDP

posted on 27/11/2015

NEW DELHI: Emirates, the world's largest international airline, and the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER) in New Delhi, yesterday released the results of an economic impact study that measures Emirates' contribution to the Indian economy.

NCAER estimates that Emirates' operations have contributed over US$848 million annually to India's GDP, supporting over 86,000 Indian jobs and generating almost US$1.7 billion in Foreign Exchange Earnings.

With India's aim to become the third-largest aviation market by 2020 and the largest by 2030, the NCAER study emphasises the important contribution that Emirates makes to India's economy and aviation sector. The report also forecasts the increased contribution that Emirates would be able to make if capacity entitlements were expanded.

Adnan Kazim, Divisional Senior Vice President – Strategic Planning, Revenue Optimisation and Aeropolitical Affairs, Emirates Airline said, "Emirates has been committed to India since we started operations in 1985.In the past 30 years, we have progressively grown our services to India by increasing capacity and opening new routes. Today we operate 183 weekly flights to nine points across India[i], offering our customers in India seamless connections to more than 140 destinations, and also facilitating inbound visitors from across our global network into India."

"The NCAER study underlines the importance of air transport and its role as an economic driver in India. Aviation facilitates trade and tourism, and creates employment in many different industries. Emirates' annual operations alone support more than 86,000 jobs across India and contribute US$848 million to the economy. We are confident that with increased capacity, we can contribute even more to India's economic growth and development by opening new conduits for trade and investment, through our growing worldwide network."

Dr. Saurabh Bandyopadhyay, NCAER, said, "The current NCAER report observed that Emirates makes an important contribution to the Indian air transport sector in terms of passenger traffic and Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEE). The airline's economic contribution to the air transport sector is seen to percolate to the economy at large through various multiplier effects. The study predicts further escalation of economic benefits for the Indian economy as Emirates grows the number of seats into India. This growth would result in direct economic contribution, multiplier effect on output and job-creation along with an induced effect on tourism. Apart from the quantified benefits from Emirates' operations in India, the identified qualitative benefits also entreat an expansion of its operation in India."

In February 2014, the aeronautical authorities of India and the UAE negotiated the first expansion of seat entitlements since 2008. As a result, Dubai-based carriers were awarded an additional 11,000 seats per week. The NCAER study models the economic value of potential future bilateral increases and forecasts that, if Emirates were to operate an additional 4,500 weekly seats between India and Dubai, an additional 4,800 jobs would be created, Foreign Exchange Earnings would rise to US$1.8 billion with the arrival of almost 40,000 more tourists a year.

If the bilateral arrangements were expanded to allow an additional 13,849 seats per week, NCAER forecasts that Emirates' operations would support 100,405 jobs a year, contribute US$987.8 million towards GDP and boost Foreign Exchange Earnings to US$2 billion per year.

Considering the breadth of Emirates' network and how the demand for air travel is expected to double in the next 5-10 years in India, Emirates is well positioned to bring a growing number of tourists and business travellers to the country, further enabling trade and investment.

The report was launched in New Delhi yesterday, in the presence of Dr Saurabh Bandyopadhyay, Project Leader, NCAER; and Essa Sulaiman Ahmad, Vice President – India and Nepal, Emirates Airline.


DGCX to launch Chinese Yuan Futures next month

posted on 27/11/2015

The Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange, DGCX, is scheduled to launch Chinese Yuan Futures on 18th of next month, subject to regulatory approvals, as part of the exchange's efforts to make the Yuan accessible to regional and global participants as China prioritises its internationalisation and is currently the fourth most traded currency in the world.

The contract will be financially settled on the same day as offshore equity index futures, and will hold a value of US$ 50,000. It will also give an outright quote on USD/CNY offshore FX rate, and will enable traders to settle in US Dollars. Intermarket trading will be available with other global exchanges that offer the contract, and will be tax free (no transaction tax and no capital gains tax).

Gaurang Desai, CEO of the DGCE, commented, "The launch of this contract perfectly complements the development of DGCX as the region's leading derivatives exchange. We are committed to providing the products that our participants want and are continuing with our ‘outside-in and inside-out' approach, meaning we market regional products to global investors and global products to regional investors. We are providing a unique trading opportunity in the region to get involved in the Chinese currency market. Our participants are also able to trade DGCX commodities with Chinese Yuan exposure, and we believe this is a true advantage for our participants."

The USD/CNH futures contract will serve to address the growing needs for offshore currency risk management tools, such as hedging for trade financing flows and CNH deposits, risk overlay and hedging for foreign fund managers.

"We are pleased with this upcoming launch, and continue to strategically work towards global expansion and outreach with every new product that we add to our portfolio," Desai concluded.