2000 01 31 : Monday

  • ZAYED CALLS FOR KEEPING PACE WITH MODERNISATION
  • MAKTOUM OPENS FNC SESSION
  • HABTOUR RE-ELECTED
  • UAE STUDIES PROPOSAL FOR GOVERNMENT BODY TO INSPECT SHIPS
  • ABU DHABI MUNICIPALITY TO HOLD WORKSHOP FOR TOURISM AND HOTEL
  • ABU DHABI STATISTICS
  • EFS UNVEILS SERIES OF FUNDS
  • BANK GUARANTEE NOT NEEDED FOR CONDUCTING DSF PROMOTIONS
  • ENERGY, FINANCE MEET IN MARCH
  • AHMED QUALIFIES FOR OLYMPICS
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    ZAYED CALLS FOR KEEPING PACE WITH MODERNISATION

    President urges peaceful end to row over UAE islands, supports Syrian demand for return of Golan, calls for Israeli withdrawal on basis of UN resolutions, hopes for end to Iraq sanctions and affirms need for collective Arab action President His Highness Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan said on Sunday that the UAE is seeking to achieve a brighter future as it enters the new millennium and to seriously work towards attaining further progress and prosperity for its citizens. In a speech at the opening of the first session of the 12th legislative chapter of the Federal National Council, FNC, read on his behalf by Deputy Prime Minister Sheikh Sultan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Sheikh Zayed said: "We are required to aspire for a brighter future with a clear view and firm conviction about our heritage, national identity and total trust in our capabilities, to keep pace with global modernisation and continue our development march with faith and resolution." The president said that the UAE had worked with other GCC countries to strengthen fraternal ties and achieve co-ordination in various fields for the welfare of the GCC citizens and the interest of member states. "The UAE has pursued clear policies to end Iran's occupation of the UAE's three Islands of the Greater and Lesser Tunb and Abu Musa, by peaceful means through the holding of serious and direct negotiations, referring the issue to international arbitration, or to the International Court of Justice, ICJ. However, the continued occupation of the three islands by Iran contradicts the clear, peaceful direction of the GCC states and our continued calls and initiatives to Iran to end the occupation in accordance with international laws and principles and in line with our historic ties, friendship and mutual interests," Sheikh Zayed said. Sheikh Zayed said the UAE welcomed the GCC decision to set up a GCC tripartite panel to draw up a mechanism to start serious negotiations between the UAE and Iran. "We are looking forward to a response from Iran to these sincere efforts to end its occupation of the three islands through serious and direct negotiations over a scheduled period of time, or referring the dispute to the ICJ This will ensure the security and stability of the region based on fraternal relations, good neighbourliness and understanding," Sheikh Zayed said. Sheikh Zayed also said the UAE was concerned about the continued plight and suffering of the Iraqi people. "The UAE is looking forward to the day when their ordeal is over, by arriving at a formula which can lead to the complete implementation of the UN security council resolutions related to the lifting of economic sanctions on Iraq," Sheikh Zayed said. He also reiterated the UAE stand on preserving and maintaining Iraq's independence and safeguarding its sovereignty. The president urged Arab leaders to respond to the call to hold an emergency Arab summit to review the painful situation in the Arab world and resolve the current inter-Arab problems and to work collectively for the welfare of the Arab and Islamic nation. "The challenges facing the interests of our Arab nation compel us to seriously work to unify our ranks to serve the cause of our nation and maintain its interests," Sheikh Zayed said. He also reiterated the UAE's belief that a just, comprehensive and permanent peace in the Middle East can be achieved, only if Israel unconditionally implements all legal international resolutions, especially the UN security council resolutions calling for Israel's withdrawal from all Arab lands, including the holy city of Jerusalem. Sheikh Zayed also reiterated the UAE's support for Syria's stance and its legal demand for a complete Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights. He also reiterated the UAE support for the Palestinian National Authority, PNA, and its call to Israel to abide by its political and legal commitments to return the national legal rights to the Palestinian people, in order to enable them to establish their independent state in Palestine, with Jerusalem as its capital. The president also reiterated the UAE support for Lebanon in its efforts to regain occupied land from Israel and the call for an unconditional withdrawal of Tel Aviv from South Lebanon and western Ekaa. The president went on to say that the UAE along with the GCC states had expressed their grave concern over the heated nuclear race and the proliferation of the weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East region. "These programmes, especially those undertaken by certain states in the region, pose threat to security, stability and peace and expose the present and future of the peoples of the region to real dangers," Sheikh Zayed said. Sheikh Zayed renewed the UAE's call for making the Middle East region, including the Gulf region, free of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction. "The rapid challenges and changes must prompt us to step up effort and work hard and sincerely in order to protect national achievements and consolidate the base of what had been attained during the march of the UAE federation." Such achievements included the increase in the national wealth from the workforce and the capable generations who will shoulder the responsibility and lead the national work in all locations and future stages along with exerting more effort to establish the foundations of peace, stability and tranquility," Sheikh Zayed concluded. (The Emirates News Agency, WAM)

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    MAKTOUM OPENS FNC SESSION

    On behalf of President His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, His Highness Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, on Sunday opened the first session of the 12th legislative chapter of the Federal National Council, FNC. The ceremony was attended by their highnesses Sheikh Saqr bin Mohammed Al Qassimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Fujairah, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, General Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Minister for Defence, Sheikh Saud bin Rashid Al Mu'alla, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Umm Al Qaiwain, Sheikh Ammar bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, Crown Prince of Ajman, Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah.

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    HABTOUR RE-ELECTED

    Mohammed Khalifa Al Habtour was unanimously re-elected as speaker of the Federal National Council, FNC, for the council's 12th legislative chapter. Habtour was speaker of the FNC for the previous chapter. The opening was attended by Sheikh Sultan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Lt. General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chief of Staff of the UAE Armed Forces, Major General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Under Secretary of the Interior Ministry, Colonel Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Sheikh Ahmed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Under Secretary of the Ministry of Finance and Industry and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Zayed Foundation for Charitable and Humanitarian Works and Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan, Chief of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince's Court. In an address, Abdullah Ali Al Sharhan, the FNC eldest member, said that the council is looking forward for government support in order to achieve its objectives in the new millennium. He renewed the FNC's allegiance to President Sheikh Zayed, affirming that the members would spare no effort to achieve ambitions and aspirations of the UAE people for better future. (The Emirates News Agency, WAM)

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    UAE STUDIES PROPOSAL FOR GOVERNMENT BODY TO INSPECT SHIPS

    The UAE is among the countries in the Middle East which is studying a proposal for setting up a state-controlled body for inspection of all ships sailing from its ports, according to a senior Dubai Ports Authority, DPA, official. Jamal Majid bin Thaniah, Assistant Managing Director of DPA, said this year's International Harbour Masters' Association Congress in Dubai will focus on the theme 'Professionalism in Ports' to be held from April 28 to May 3. Many topics related to marine operation in ports, including environmental issues and marine pollution, development in marine information technology and more specifically - vessel traffic services and maritime laws will be taken up for discussion. Several papers will be presented at the congress, which is being held for the first time outside Europe and which will be attended by delegates from 40 countries. (The Gulf Today)

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    ABU DHABI MUNICIPALITY TO HOLD WORKSHOP FOR TOURISM AND HOTEL

    The environment protection section of the Food and Environment Control Centre, FECC, at the Abu Dhabi Municipality will organise a workshop on implementing ISO14001 in the Abu Dhabi Hotels and Tourism Industry. The workshop, which will be held on February 2 at FECC main conference hall, is being organised in co-operation with the Abu Dhabi Green Hoteliers, United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, and the International Network Environmental Management. The workshop entitled "Your Guide to Implementing ISO14001 focusing the Abu Dhabi Hotel and Tourism Industry" will coincide with the country celebration in the 3rd Environment National Day on February 3. (The Gulf Today)

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    ABU DHABI STATISTICS

    The population of Abu Dhabi was 1.01 million by the end of 1998, 691,645 males and 310,032 females, according to a report published by Department of Planning in Abu Dhabi. Live births in 1998 was 21,294, males 10,929 and females, 10, 365. There were 2,183 death registered in the same year, 1,619 males and 564 females. A total of 2,446 marriages were registered by the end of 1997 of which 741 were of expatriates of various nationalities. The number of divorce cases was 968 of which 369 were of non-nationals. The number of people who entered the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in 1998 was, 1,184,234 and the number of departures 1,208,228. More than 60 per cent of the Abu Dhabi population is in the age group of 20-45, about 35 per cent from 5 to 19 year and the rest in age group of 49 to 60. The total number of workers in local departments in 1998 stood at 41,725, compared to 41,233 in the previous year; 7,089 nationals, 15,056 Arab expatriates and 19,580 others. There were 51 clinics in 1998 in the government health services, compared to 50 in 1997. In the private sector the number of clinics increased from 374 in 1997 to 393 in 1998. The number of government pharmacies increase in 1998 to 159 from 139 in 1997. The number of nurses and assistance increased in 1998 to 3,615 from 3,385 in 1997. The number of driving licences issued in 1998 was 40,267, compared to 37,926 in the previous year, 146, 851 licences were renewed in 1998, compare to 121, 534 in the previous year. (The Khaleej Times)

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    EFS UNVEILS SERIES OF FUNDS

    A set of three sector-specific funds open to all nationalities has been launched by Emirates Financial Services, the investment arm of Emirates Bank Group. These form the initial part of EFS' Capital Protected Fund Series with more in the offing. The initial offer period will be four weeks starting February 1. Prospectus will be available at all Emirates Bank International and Middle East Bank branches. The launch included the 'e' Securities ('e'SEC) Fund, 'e' Venture Capital ('e'VC) Fund and Emirates Fund of Funds (EFF). All three have an investment horizon and capital protection period of three years. The unit subscription of each is Dh10. Minimum investment is Dh10,000 and further in multiples of Dh1,000. Each unit will be capital-protected to the extent of its subscription price of Dh10. The 'e'SEC Fund will invest in publicly traded securities of global e-businesses and other IT sectors. The 'e'VC Fund will include venture capital in unquoted private equity investments in a range of IT related businesses, including start-ups and established businesses. It will seek to nurture and provide support to landmark projects such as Dubai Internet City, Internet portals and other new projects on a national, regional and global basis. (The Gulf News)

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    BANK GUARANTEE NOT NEEDED FOR CONDUCTING DSF PROMOTIONS

    In a bid to encourage greater participation by establishments in the Dubai Shopping Festival and other economic activities, the Department of Economic Development, DED, has cancelled the requirement for a bank guarantee for the purpose of conducting promotions. The move was in line with its policy to support and improve economic activities, simplify procedures and give establishments in Dubai a chance to get maximum benefits from promotions for increasing sales. Previously, under DED regulations, establishments that wished to organise any promotion carrying prizes worth more than Dh10,000 were required to furnish a bank guarantee equivalent to the value of prizes for three months after the last draw or the end of the promotion. (The Khaleej Times)

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    ENERGY, FINANCE MEET IN MARCH

    A major conference on energy, finance and infrastructure in the Middle East titled "Gulf 2000" will be held in Abu Dhabi on March 28 and 29. The conference will be held under the patronage of Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan, Chief of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince's Court. The conference will focus on discussions the region's business climate, how the government is dealing with unprecedented oil prices, investment and financing options and a detailed analysis of privatisation programmes and government plans for development. (The Gulf Today)

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    AHMED QUALIFIES FOR OLYMPICS

    Sheikh Ahmed Mohammed Hasher Al Maktoum has become the first UAE national to qualify for the Olympic Games. Sheikh Ahmed will compete in the shotgun even of the men's Olympic Trap in the Sydney 2000 Games later this year. Sheikh Ahmed is the first to secure a place in the Games by actually qualifying. He did so my winning the bronze medal in the Asian Championships held last week in Malaysia. Sheikh Ahmed's success in Malaysia is the culmination of consistently excellent results in competition over the past two years, which confirms him as one of the world's top shooters. (The Khaleej Times)

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