Mohamed bin Zayed tours model farms in Abu Dhabi

ABU DHABI, 4th July 2020 (WAM) – His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, on Saturday, visited several youth-owned model farms in Al Bahia area of Abu Dhabi.
He was accompanied during his tour 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; H.H. Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince’s Court and Member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council; Sheikh Sultan bin Hamdan Al Nahyan, Adviser to the UAE President; Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoun Al Nahyan, Board Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Airports Company; Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Almheiri, Minister of State for Food Security, and Mohammed Mubarak Al Mazrouei, Under-Secretary of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince’s Court.
His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed said he was delighted to see such ambitious projects by the country’s youth, using the latest technologies to provide high-quality agricultural products and contributing to the drive to achieve sustainable food security in the UAE.
He was briefed by Hamed Al Hamed, owner of “Gracia Farm” and Dr. Khalid Al Shamsi and Ahmed Khalfan Al Shamsi, who own organic farms, on the products grown there, irrigation methods, marketing as well as the challenges facing the local farming sector.
His Highness Sheikh Mohamed stressed the importance of employing advanced technology in the country’s agricultural sector, taking into consideration the highest standards for sustainability, quality and competitiveness. He also called for developing innovative solutions to produce and manage food crops and to overcome challenges facing the sector.
“Supporting the agriculture sector is consistent with the UAE’s strategy for sustainability, environmental protection and preserving natural resources,” he added.
Agriculture, H.H. Sheikh Mohamed continued, is a very vital sector and comes at the heart of the national security. It is the key pillar in the country’s strategy to ensure food security and build a sustainable economy. These farms contribute to maintaining self-sufficiency and minimising dependence on external products.
“The late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan attached great importance to agriculture. He supported it and did not listen to those who thought agriculture had no future in the UAE. He was a visionary and always believed that agriculture is the backbone of any society. President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has continued that approach and is providing full support and incentives to the farmers to develop their agricultural projects.”
He wished the young farmers success in their projects and expressed the leadership’s keenness to support the farmers and to encourage national products.
He urged the farmers across the UAE to invest in these farms and to use innovative ways to turn them into a source of support to the country’s agriculture sector.
The farm owners expressed their pleasure over Sheikh Mohamed’s visit and praised the leadership’s unlimited support to the youth working in the agriculture sector.

Ministry of Health conducts more than 71,000 additional COVID-19 tests, announces 716 new cases, 704 recoveries, and three deaths

ABU DHABI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Ministry of Health and Prevention, MoHAP, has announced that it has conducted more than 71,000 additional COVID-19 tests.
In a statement issued on Sunday, the Ministry outlined its plans to continue expanding the scope of testing nationwide to aid in the early detection of COVID-19 cases and to help medical professionals carry out necessary treatment.
As part of the intensified testing campaign, MoHAP said 716 new coronavirus cases had been detected, bringing the total number of cases in the UAE to 50,857.
According to the Ministry, patients with COVID-19 are from various nationalities and remain in a stable condition while receiving all necessary care.
MoHAP also announced three fatalities as a result of COVID-19 complications, taking the total number of deaths in the country to 321.
The Ministry expressed its sincere condolences to the families of the deceased and wished all COVID-19 patients undergoing treatment a speedy and full recovery.
MoHAP added that an additional 704 individuals have now fully recovered from COVID-19, bringing the total number of recoveries in the UAE to 39,857.

Abu Dhabi City Municipality providing water, juices, umbrellas to outdoor workers

ABU DHABI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Abu Dhabi City Municipality is joining forces with the General Women’s Union to provide cold water and juices, and umbrellas to municipal workers who perform their jobs outside during the summer.
The municipality said the Suqya initiative aims to instil the values of social solidarity and cooperation, as well as giving and compassion among members of the community.
The initiative will be implemented on Monday and Wednesday every week until the end of September and benefit 1,500 workers who are working during hot weather conditions on the municipality

Russia’s coronavirus death toll surpasses 10,000

MOSCOW, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — Russia’s coronavirus fatalities grew by 168 in the past 24 hours climbing to 10,027, the anti-coronavirus crisis center said on Saturday.
The daily growth rate was 1.7 percent, which is significantly less than in late May and early June, the center said in a report, carried by Russian news agency, TASS.
Russia’s coronavirus cases grew by 6,632 in the past 24 hours, the daily growth is less than 7,000 for nine days, according to the data provided by the anti-coronavirus crisis center.
The total number of infections has climbed to 674,515, the daily growth rate does not exceed 1 percent for five days.
Currently, 217,609 people in Russia are undergoing treatment.
The number of recovered coronavirus patients in Russia grew by 8,986 in the past 24 hours, a total of 446,879 people have recovered from the disease so far, the anti-coronavirus crisis center said on Saturday.
According to the crisis center, recoveries exceed 66.2 percent of the total number of infected people in Russia.

Ajman Chamber launches its website with a new look

AJMAN, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — In a new look, Abdullah Al Muwaiji, Chairman of the Ajman Chamber of Commerce and Industry, launched the website of the Chamber during a virtual meeting joined by members of the Board of Directors.
The step comes within the endeavors of the Ajman Chamber to improve its electronic and smart services and to motivate its members and customers to complete their transactions smoothly in a way that ensures the continuity of business in line with the directions of the government, federally and locally.
The site stands out as a platform highlighting the advantages of investment in the Emirate of Ajman and the top promotional activities, services and events that the Ajman Chamber works on. It further provides all of the Chamber’s services for its members including “membership services, certificate of origin services, attestation services, legal services, services of the Ajman Businesswomen Council and services of the Ajman Conciliation and Arbitration Centre.
“Launch of the site in its new look comes in line with the directions of the Ajman government in particular and the UAE in general for the digital smart transformation in providing services and building a knowledge-based economy,” Khawla Khalfan, Executive Director of the Support Services at Ajman Chamber, said.
She also noted that the site provides the necessary services and information that the investors need.
“The Ajman Chamber’s Board of Directors is keen on multiplying efficient and smooth platforms of services to enrich the experience of members and customers and to meet their aspirations to enhance the work environment and to increase its sustainability,” she added.
She also explained that the site’s design meets the highest standards, requirements and cyber security, with flexibility of developing content in the future to meet the changing requirements and developments of work.
Launching of the website in light of the current conditions and the precautions measures is necessary to complete the transactions remotely and smoothly in order to preserve public health, Khawla Khalfan added.
For her part, Fatima Al-Awadi, Director of Technology and Smart Services Department, explained that the Chamber’s website features the vision, mission, organizational structure and institutions of Ajman Chamber. In addition, it highlights membership privileges with allowing access to the most important annual researches and reports that serve the business community. It further links the services provided with smart payment mechanisms via Ajman Pay and digital ID system.
She stated that the site would enhance the Chamber’s communication with the members and customers to monitor all opinions and suggestions that flow into the quality of the work environment by supporting the sustainability of members.

Dubai Economy sees 83% growth in DED trader licences issued in first half of 2020

DUBAI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Department of Economic Development, DED, Trader licence launched by the Business Registration and Licensing, BRL, sector, enabling start-ups in Dubai to conduct business activities online and across social networking accounts, has seen an 83 percent increase in licences issued from January to end of June 2020.
Compared to the same period last year when the total number reached 1,064, the DED received an overwhelming response with 1,947 licences issued this year till June.
The report also showed that the number of DED Trader licences issued in June has reached 577, an increase of 163 percent compared to June 2019, when 219 were issued. This reflects the growth of Dubai as a leading destination for e-commerce and a commercial hub for consumers in the Middle East region, as the emirate adopts its e-commerce strategy.
Dubai Economy focuses on providing support to DED Trader licence holders by signing partnerships with government and private sectors, providing facilities for their business growth as well as opening new channels by enhancing cooperation with major sales outlets.
The total number of DED Trader activities is 382, and the number of permitted activities in a single licence is ten, provided that they are consistent within the same group category. “Lifestyle Coaching” topped the list of activities issued since the launch until the end of June 2020 followed by “Marketing Services Via Social Media”; “Portal”; “Social Media Applications Development and Management”; “Perfumes and Cosmetics Trading”; “Marketing Management”; “Project Management Services”; “Web-Design”; “Ladies Wears Tailoring and Embroidery”; and “Readymade Garments Trading”.
“Information Technology” group, which includes 17 activities topped the list of activity groups followed by “Fashion” (33 activities); “Other Personal and Trading Services” (13); “Ladies tailoring and design” (3), “Preparation of Food” (7); “Commercial brokerage” (2); “Event organisers” (8); “Handicraft workshops” (13); “Electronics group” (17); and “Exhibition organisers” (5). The total number of the DED Trader licence groups is 82.
The licensee cannot open a shop/store but can avail of three visas if the ownership is 100 percent Emirati and legal liability falls under the licence holder. The licence is issued electronically wherever you are by visiting and following simple steps; create username and password; enter address details, and social media accounts for the project/business; select the activity and trade name and finally, pay and receive the licence electronically.
Availing a DED Trader licence entitles you to a Dubai Chamber membership for commercial activities, bank facilities; a Customs Client Code which facilitates import and export via; temporary employment services; participation in exhibitions and conferences and training workshop; displaying of products in consumer points of sale and providing workspace.

Cooperation between ADJD, Sharjah Correctional Facility in Remote Trial system

ABU DHABI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Abu Dhabi Judicial Department, ADJD, has expanded the application of the “Remote Trial System” by promoting cooperation with the Penal and Correctional Institution of Sharjah, by conducting the trial of a detainee wanted for enforcement before Al Dhafra Court, using video communication technology, VCT, to be presented to the judge and to hear his
testimony instead of bringing him personally from Sharjah to Al Dhafra area in Abu Dhabi.
This initiative is also in line with the directives of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of ADJD, to work continuously to modernise and keep pace with the digital transformation to contribute effectively to realise Abu Dhabi Vision 2030 by enhancing the efficiency of litigation and achieving a comprehensive judicial system and to continue development efforts to provide a package of digital services to complete the judicial processes remotely.
In the details of that case, which was considered by the Al Dhafra Court of First Instance, an arrest order was issued in a financial case by the enforcement judge, addressed to the Al Dhafra Police Directorate, and it was found that the wanted man was in custody in another case in Sharjah. In cooperation with the Investigation and Case File Section of the Police Investigation Department, all necessary legal procedures were undertaken and the trial was conducted through VCT.

In the run up to the first Arab probe lift-off to Mars, VP launches ‘Arab Space Pioneers’ programme

DUBAI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, announced the launch of the ‘Arab Space Pioneers’ programme that aims to build Arab expertise in space science and technologies.
Overseen by the UAE Space Agency, the programme will equip young Arab researchers, scientists, inventors and creative talents with skills and expertise required to lead a career in the growing space sector.
The three-year intensive training programme incubates young talents and expands their career prospects in the region’s emerging space technologies.
On his Twitter account, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum said, “In the coming days, the UAE will launch the Hope Probe to Mars, the Arab world’s first interplanetary mission. And today, we are launching a programme to invite Arab youth to gain expertise in space technologies in the UAE.” He added, “We strive to prepare the next generation of Arab astronomers and space scientists as part of our wider mission to revive the Arab civilization’s status in the scientific sphere.”
Candidates with a passion for space science and a scientific background can apply on the website Applications will be evaluated based on qualifications and achievements in research and science fields.
The ‘Arab Space Pioneers’ programme was launched in the run up to the UAE’s historic launch of the Hope Probe to Mars, scheduled on July 15, 2020, in the first ever Arab mission to the Red Planet. The Emirates Mars Mission aims to spark an Arab exploration of outer space, build a space industry in the region and advance regional and national capabilities in this sector.
The programme seeks to help the region’s talents in the creative and scientific industry to practice their passion in space science through specialized training in the UAE, which has long invested in the space sector, making it the Arab world’s most advanced.
It aims to invest in young Arab capacities who, in turn, can actively contribute to the global science community and drive scientific, economic and social development in their societies. The programme highlights the importance of investing in the multi-faceted space technology as a major driver of the future knowledge-based economy in the region.
Programme benefits

Participants in the ‘Arab Space Pioneers’ programme will receive a number of benefits including a fully-covered three-year residency in the UAE, a world-class specialized training in space science and technology, an opportunity to build advanced satellites in the UAE and access to scholarships and other financial incentives. Joining the programme also increases job opportunities and provides an opportunity to join teams of Emirati researchers, engineers and experts in a number of space projects.
The intensive programme combines theoretical and hands-on practical training by enabling participants to contribute to the UAE Space Agency’s present and future projects. On the long run, the programme aims to contribute to enriching the region’s growing space sector with a pool of young Arab experts and specialists equipped with the needed skills to lead in the new field.
Inspiring Young Minds

Dr. Ahmad Belhoul, Chairman of the UAE Space Agency said, “the ‘Arab Space Pioneers’ programme responds to the rising ambitions and passion of the young Arab generation in advanced sciences and space, and tackles the need to invest in the future economy.”
He added, “Announcing the programme in line with the countdown to the historic launch of the UAE’s Mars Hope Probe sends an inspirational message to young Arab minds and talents across the region that the sky is not the limit to their dreams. The programme enables them to make their dreams a profound reality, presenting the UAE as a live example that embedded the culture of possibilities in its approach and work philosophy.”
Belhoul noted, “Building expertise in space science and technology enables youth to actively contribute to global efforts towards creating a sustainable future for mankind.”
He stressed that the country’s visionary leaders have noticed early on the importance of investing in the space industry and related advanced technologies to support development. “Our leadership is keen to place the expertise gained over the past years in an advanced training programme that combines theory with hands-on practice to prepare the next generation of Arab space specialists who are valuable to their societies.”
Belhoul referred to the Hope Probe as a “giant leap in the development of science in the Arab world, through which we revive the proud history of the Arab Islamic region as the cradle of civilization in its golden age.”


Next Gen Abu Dhabi begins first ‘nanodegrees’ in future skills

Abu Dhabi, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Abu Dhabi School of Government, ADSG, a Department of Government Support entity, and the Abu Dhabi Youth Council today launched the first “Next Generation Abu Dhabi” programme, in partnership with Udacity, a global leader in the field of online learning.
The new programmes will be part of the “Youth Skills Platform”, which was first launched on February 2020, during the Innovation Month, to build the skills required for Abu Dhabi’s youth to embrace the age of digital transformation.
In the initial rollout, the programme has partnered with Udacity to provide the nanodegrees, which are certified courses requiring less than four months of study, to provide learners with the latest technological content, knowledge and practical skills. More than 270 learners were selected as the first cohort of the business analytics and digital marketing nanodegree programme. This follows a rigorous assessment stage of more than 2,000 candidates. The first cohort will continue their journey over the next four months.
Alia Abdulla Al Mazrouei, Acting Director-General of Abu Dhabi School of Government, said, “These courses will be foundational and practical, as well as highly relevant to several digital transformation projects that are underway in many emerging industries. The courses have been designed to be relevant to the future of skills requirements of the nation and we want to ensure that our young people are prepared for the many challenges that they will face in the future business environment. The nanodegrees will be an essential part of our educational offer and we believe they can make a real difference to the future economy in the emirate.”
Maryam Al-Mehyas, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Youth Council, said, “Launching nanodegrees through the Udacity platform is a result of the continuous cooperation with the ADSG, through which we aspire to provide the latest technology and knowledge to support the needs of the market and help deliver the strategy of the Abu Dhabi government.”
The project was originally developed in partnership with more than 200 experts in the field of technology including Google, Facebook, Amazon, and other leading international technology giants.
The programme targets locals and residents between the ages of 18 and 35 and requires a commitment to delivering projects on deadline and some remote hours study. Additional programmes will be announced on the platform in the coming months on both, the ADSG and the Abu Dhabi Youth Council websites.
To register in programmes under the Next Generation Abu Dhabi initiative, please visit the following link:

SSC launches virtual summer programme on Sunday

SHARJAH, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Sharjah Sports Council, SSC, will launch its virtual summer programme on Sunday, 5th of July, with the participation of 18 clubs in the Emirate of Sharjah.
The programme will continue until 30th July 2020 via the visual communication program “WEBEX”, with the aim of achieving the strategic goals of SSC in caring for young people, which comes under the framework of honing their capabilities and talents, investing in their summer vacation, and enabling them to practice their favourite hobbies.
Registration to the programme was closed with 80 participants between 8 and 12 years old, both boys and girls, with the provision of activities for two hours daily from 5 PM until 7 PM.
On this occasion, Issa Hilal Al Hazami, Secretary-General of Sharjah Sports Council, highlighted that such summer vacation event comes in the interest of young people of both sexes, according to the vision of H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah and Chairperson of the Supreme Council for Family Affairs, and the follow-up of H.H. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah, to support such programmes that benefit young people.
He added that the programme received great turnout from parents since its announcement, and will provide a diversified programme that includes many activities.

Law regulating drone activity facilitates DCAA’s Dubai Sky Dome project: Ahmed bin Saeed

DUBAI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, DCAA, said the issuance of Law No. (4) of 2020 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, regulating the operations of unmanned aerial vehicles, UAV or drones, in the emirate, establishes the framework for Dubai to be one of the world’s leading cities in shaping the future of civil aviation.

“Dubai Civil Aviation Authority is constantly looking to develop initiatives that support His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s vision of making Dubai a global pioneer and leader in shaping future sectors. Drone systems represent one of the most promising emerging technologies in the civil aviation and transport sector. The new Law supports the implementation of the Authority’s ‘Dubai Sky Dome’ initiative, which seeks to build a structural eco-system for drones. In cooperation with the General Secretariat of The Executive Council of Dubai, the ‘Dubai Sky Dome’ initiative has created a detailed drone systems policy,” HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed said.

The ‘Dubai Sky Dome’ project aims to transform Dubai into a virtual airspace infrastructure for unmanned aerial vehicles systems that connect places and buildings through runways and miniature airports across the city.

The new Law facilitates the development of an integrated framework for licensing and issuing certificates, permits, NOCs, and inspection services related to drone systems, and a legal system for investigating drone accidents and incidents.

Mohammed Abdullah Ahli, Director General of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority and CEO of Dubai Air Navigation Services said the new Law is one of the many pioneering steps that Dubai is undertaking ahead of other global cities in the domain of UAVs. It was developed through the joint efforts of the DCAA, the General Secretariat of The Executive Council and the Supreme Committee for Legislation.

“The Law outlines the responsibilities of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority and other concerned government entities and the regulatory framework for activities related to the use, circulation, registration, manufacturing, import, sale, and possession of drones. It also sets out legislation governing their control systems and airports and specifies the obligations related to drone operations and the use of the emirate’s airspace. The new Law also specifies permitted, prohibited, restricted and dangerous areas for drones,” he added.

Mohammed Abdullah Ahli explained that the Law is the first step towards creating an aerial infrastructure network for drone systems featuring mini-airports and landing pads throughout the emirate. By developing an integrated business system for drone-based transport services, air freight and logistic services, these activities will create an important new economic tributary for Dubai’s economy.

Mohamed Abdullah Lengawi, Executive Director of Aviation Security and Accident Investigation Sector and Head of the ‘Dubai Sky Dome’ Planetarium Team at the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, said: “The ‘Dubai Sky Dome’ project, which was approved by The Executive Council, aims to tap into massive potential opportunities for drones systems. Global studies indicate that the drones transport systems market, which consists mainly of delivery of goods, transport of passengers and freight, surveying and imaging, holds considerable promise as an emerging sector.

Following the issuance of the new Law, which completes the legislative base for the ‘Dubai Sky Dome’, other project components will be implemented including an aviation traffic management system for drones, the “Dubai Shield” system to manage security related to the use of drones, and the master plan for the infrastructure for airports, stations and ground and air service locations.

Another key component of the project is a unique integrated smart platform for providing regulatory services for UAVs to use domestic airspace and other related government services. The digital platform, which will grant instant government permits and no-objection certificates for drone operations, will also facilitate efficient governance of the sector to ensure security and safety and prevent any disruption to the civil aviation airspace.

The ‘Dubai Sky Dome’ will create a master plan for the infrastructure of ground stations and their use as airports, loading and connecting stations, and maintenance, operation and freight stations. It will also classify the main urban areas of Dubai with the aim of building a model for the distribution of ground and air service sites.

Obaid Saif Al Nuaimi, Director of Aviation Security and Dangerous Goods at the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority and head of the ‘Dubai Shield’ project team, said that one of the important components of the ‘Dubai Sky Dome’ project is a system to address safety and security risks faced by the airspace due to drone activity. The Dubai Shield will detect and track drones and take necessary counter measures in cooperation with relevant government and security authorities.

The ‘Dubai Sky Dome’ project is one of the key initiatives that will accelerate the growth of future trends and the sustainable development in the aviation market based out of Dubai and create new value-added services for aviation customers.



Khalifa Fund launches entrepreneurship summer camp targeting 100 students in Abu Dhabi

ABU DHABI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development has announced the launch of Venturist, a two-week entrepreneurship summer camp in July and August for citizen and resident students aged 10 to 14 and 14 to 18 years old, based in Abu Dhabi. Students will learn essential entrepreneurship skills, including the elements behind starting a business, problem solving skills, and maximising digital literacy for a marketplace that is increasingly tech-savvy.
The Venturist Summer Camp will take place during two groups, from 5th – 27th July, and 5th – 20th August.
In the opening week, students will participate in virtual classes concerning an introduction to entrepreneurship and business ideation, before gaining an understanding of design thinking, and business modelling, including case studies from successful global start-ups. Students will then be put into teams to explore how to create meaningful social and economic value, conducting market research, developing a prototype product or service, and how to iterate and improve their ideas and business model based on how the market reacts. In the second week, students will undergo lessons on management and execution, as well as fundamentals on how to scale-up a business and how to create a launch plan with a comprehensive sales and marketing strategy. The Venturist, Khalifa Fund entrepreneurship summer camp will conclude with students pitching their business ideas to a committee of representatives and entrepreneurs that have had first-hand experience of working alongside Khalifa Fund.
Mubarak Al Ameri, the Executive Director of Outreach Management Department in Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development, said: “As the leading enterprise development organisation in the region, we aim to spread entrepreneurship culture and shape the future of the UAE’s entrepreneurial ecosystem by investing heavily into immersive education programmes, from a grassroots level to established SMEs. By providing this emerging generation with opportunities to learn about entrepreneurial skills, we’re creating an environment that empowers youth to think ahead and understand the business world from an early age.”
He added: “We see this generation as the one that will continue the UAE’s exponential growth in the SME sector, and thus further diversify our national economy. This can only be achieved by nurturing today’s bright, young talent, into tomorrow’s leading business minds. Initiatives and programmes like Venturist will help us to further enhance the sector, as we provide youth with access to Khalifa Fund mentors and showcase to students that the private sector is ripe with opportunities; they can become anything they strive to be.”

Make a Wish Foundation UAE grants wishes of 300 children in H1 2020

ABU DHABI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) – “Make a Wish” Foundation UAE has successfully granted the wishes of 300 children suffering from chronic and serious diseases in the first half of 2020.
Sheikha Shaikha bint Saif bin Mohammed Al Nahyan, the wife of H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Advisor to the President of the UAE, and Chairwoman of the Foundation’s
Board of Directors, commended the landmark achievements despite that challenges posed by the spread of the coronavirus, COVID-19, which imposed strict isolation measures which affected both government and private sectors.
Sheikha Shaikha said 16 wishes of children with fatal diseases were granted, out of 169 granted in the first quarter of the year in the category of “I wish to go”, while 131 were granted via advanced technologies in the second quarter of the year.
“We are proud to grant these wishes in the UAE, the nation of tolerance, humanity, generosity, peace, and compassion,” she said, noting that 300 wishes were granted to 152 boys and 148 girls from 19 various nationalities suffering from 45 chronic and serious diseases,” she added.
“We are looking forward to continuing delivering our strategies despite the challenging circumstances we face,” she stressed.
She said that seeing a smile on the face of the sick is “invaluable”, praying to The Almighty Allah to aid the great efforts being made by the UAE leadership in its fight against the virus.

National Biosecurity Committee discusses desert locust situation, zoonotic diseases

DUBAI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The National Biosecurity Committee held its second meeting of 2020 to examine multiple relevant issues, and review the status of the deliverables and recommendations of its first meeting of 2020 and second meeting of 2019.
Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, presided over the session.
As the first order of business, the members discussed updates on the desert locust situation in the country and the plan to address it. Current climatic conditions have helped an outbreak of locusts advance across East Africa, Southwest Asia, and the Red Sea coastal areas.
The meeting featured a briefing on the efforts made by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment, MOCCAE, so far to stop the swarms of locusts from spreading. These include developing the online Early Biosecurity Notification System that can be used to report sightings of the pests, monitoring the movement of locust swarms, informing the concerned entities of the results of the monitoring exercise and of the status of the outbreak in neighboring countries, and conducting pest control operations at farms, if needed.
The members recommended to continue monitoring the situation and keep intervention teams prepared. They will also follow up on the approval of the Desert Locust Control Plan and work to enhance the capabilities of its implementing entities.
The second item on the agenda was the National Plan for Fighting Zoonotic Diseases and Pandemics. Given that 58 percent of infectious diseases in people are zoonotic, and 73 percent of emerging diseases are communicable between humans and animals, the Ministry will lead the development and implementation of the plan with the support of other relevant entities.
Moreover, the Committee discussed the unified guidelines for sanitization processes and the use of disinfectants and detergents that were issued by MOCCAE in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Prevention and other stakeholders, and distributed in May 2020. The guidelines serve as a reference for local authorities on building disinfection best practices aimed at combating the spread of COVID-19.
The members were also briefed about the reports that the Ministry issues weekly during the pandemic, including a report on the numbers of inbound and outbound live sheep and cows, and a report on COVID-19 disinfection. This was followed by a presentation of the results of the National Mosquito Control Program that MOCCAE launched in December 2019.
Furthermore, the Committee reviewed the status of the deliverables and recommendations of its last meeting, including the approval and distribution of the Biosecurity Manual for Ports that took place in February 2020. Subsequently, the Ministry held a virtual workshop for the stakeholders to introduce them to the contents of the publication.
Among the recommendations of the second meeting of 2019 were the incorporation of biosecurity into the curricula of universities and other higher education institutions, as well as the circulation of the Laboratory Biosecurity Manual. In addition, the members evaluated the progress of the upgrade of the online Early Biosecurity Notification System, set for completion in Q4 2020. MOCCAE has developed a manual for the upgraded system, and plans to conduct workshops for stakeholders in Q3 2020.

Dubai launches Marine Agency to regulate dhow sector and promote its role in reinforcing trade

DUBAI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, PCFC, in cooperation with the Dubai Maritime City Authority, DMCA, has launched a Marine Agency to oversee wooden dhow ships and regulate all their activities while they are in Dubai waters.
The agency is an organisational unit managed by the PCFC and works according to regulations in coordination with the competent government authorities.
Dubai is a key destination for dhows carrying various types of merchandise and goods from several Middle East and North Africa, MENA, region countries. Each year, dhows transport over 720,000 tonnes of goods. The move also aims to consolidate the safety and security of dhows in Dubai waters.
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem Chairman of the PCFC, said, “Responsibilities of the Marine Agency will not be limited to following up on transactions and collecting fees. Its main responsibility will be to develop the current dhow trade sector by proposing legislations and regulations to develop their operations to gradually use electronic services and smart trade solutions to expedite the procedures. The agency is also responsible for looking after the interests of the dhow owners and ensuring the safety, security and rights of seafarers while in Dubai.”
“The agency will also be responsible for protecting the rights of local dhow owners and taking care of foreign dhows. They will all have one point of contact to take care of their affairs and respond to their concerns to facilitate their business in Dubai,” he further added.
The Marine Agency will be the only entity responsible for dealing with dhows during their presence in Dubai waters. It will collect fees, wages and expenses due to the concerned government authorities from dhow owners or operators and pay them on their behalf. The agency will also monitor seafarers’ work as dhows are docked at the ports and harbours until they depart. The agency will coordinate with the relevant government authorities on marine safety of dhows, and coordinate with the competent authorities in case of any marine accidents or emergencies.
The agency will also collaborate with relevant government entities to facilitate its tasks and operations in Dubai waters, including the Dubai Police, the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs, Dubai Customs, Dubai Municipality, the Roads and Transport Authority, the General Authority of Ports, Borders and Free Zones Security, Coast Guard and the Dubai Civil Defence. The agency is also responsible for forming joint task forces to deal with accidents, crises or disasters to ensure maritime safety of dhows in Dubai waters and improve the services offered to them.
The Marine Agency will help dhow owners develop their business by saving their time and reducing the number of transactions to clear their goods. It will also provide them with one point of contact, offering them multiple trade options such as long-term contract opportunities for their services. All local and foreign dhow owners will have to register their ships with the agency and follow its rules for sailing and carrying out shipping and loading operations in Dubai ports.
The agency will also implement transparency of service fee applicable to local traders and will be responsible for several services including cargo handling, ensuring goods safety and damage control during discharge/loading, berth booking, etc.

Al Ain Zoo launches Arabian sand cat conservation programme

AL AIN, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — Al Ain Zoo launched today its Arabian sand cat conservation programme to protect the sand cat in cooperation with its strategic partners through various workshops hosted by the zoo.
The workshops aimed to understand the current situation of the sand cat and combine all the knowledge we have in one document. One of the key objectives of the workshops was to conduct field research in order to study the wild population and the challenges and threats facing them. Additionally, conduct study on the cats’ genetics and make recommendation on the management and breeding options.
Al Ain Zoo has contributed too many research-based and scientific publications that informs knowledge on wildlife conservation and animal management. One of the recent publications was on the analysis of the sand cat genetic to determine the validity of the subspecies of the sand cats.
Regarding genetic research, the zoo and relevant organisations have developed plans for genetic management and controlled breeding programs after examining the effects of genetic diversity and identifying the negative and reproductive challenges and opportunities. This was done by sending male kittens from the zoo to specialized research centers in France. The studies’ findings showed a match between the Arabian and Asian cats, though not the African ones.
The zoo is making deliberate efforts in cooperation with partners who specialize in this field at the local and international levels by adopting basic strategies to conserve the Arabian sand cat. This would be achieved by setting objectives and action plans and developing programs that focus on genetic studies and field research.
In collaboration with its key partners, Al Ain Zoo is continuing its efforts to study the wild population and develop plans for monitoring the sand cats in their natural habitats. The zoo has positioned itself as a global leader by embracing the largest group of Arabian sand cats in the world and has succeeded in its captive management and breeding programs. It is also planning to open a Sand Cat Breeding Centre, which will be the first of its kind.
The centre is devoted to the care and reproduction of these shy animals within strict criteria that also take into account their extreme sensitivity to respiratory infections by controlling the temperature and humidity of the shelters. The breeding centre contributes to increasing the numbers of sand cats in breeding programs and improving the genetic origins of this species, locally and globally.

EPA opens registrations for Emirates Publishers Emergency Fund

SHARJAH, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Emirates Publishers Association, EPA, has announced that it has begun accepting applications for the Emirates Publishers Emergency Fund launched by Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, Founder and Former President of EPA, to support and finance UAE publishers impacted by the coronavirus, COVID-19.
The AED1 million fund was launched by the EPA this June in partnership with the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development, MCKD, Sharjah Book Authority, SBA, and Sharjah Publishing City, SPC.
Publishers need to submit their applications in Arabic or English, available on the organisation’s website:, to avail of the fund’s provisions.
All applicants must be active members of the EPA from 2018 to 1st June, 2020, and ought to be working in the publishing, printing or distribution sectors. They also have a valid commercial licence from either the Economic Development Departments or free zones across the UAE. Only publishing houses that have not received any form of financial support since the start of 2020 will be considered by the Fund, while only one publishing house will be funded in case the owner has multiple outfits.
To avail the monetary benefits, publishers must present proof of the amount of loss incurred as a result of the cancellation of contracts, book fairs or other cultural engagements between February and June 2020.
Publishers will also be evaluated based on their efforts to sustain their business and ensure continuity of work through the pandemic. Additionally, only those businesses which did not terminate the contracts of their employees since the beginning of 2020 will be considered.
Outlining the objectives of the “Emirates Publishers Emergency Fund”, EPA President Ali Obaid Bin Hatem emphasised that the fund reflects Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi’s commitment to supporting the sector.
Extending his gratitude to Sheikha Bodour, he also noted that the EPA has chalked out key strategies to offer additional supporting to its membership.
Speaking on the subject, Rashid Al Kous, Executive Director of EPA, commented, “We are looking forward to having publishers come up with innovative solutions to maintain the growing status of an energetic Emirati publishing industry. Although the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 outbreak have been multilayered, they have signalled new opportunities. EPA thanks its partners, MCKD, SBA and SPC, for joining hands with us.”
EPA was founded in 2009 by Sheikha Bodour to develop the publishing sector in the UAE, and provide support and training to Emirati publishers.

HCHF commends UN Security Council’s worldwide ceasefire resolution to combat COVID-19

ABU DHABI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Higher Committee of Human Fraternity, HCHF, a group of religious leaders, educational scholars and cultural leaders from across the world, commended the UN Security Council unanimously adopted resolution, which called upon all parties to armed conflicts to immediately engage in a “durable humanitarian pause” of at least 90 days, to enable all countries to combat COVID-19 pandemic.

HCHF stressed that it welcomes and supports this worldwide humanitarian pause that comes at a time when world unity is needed more than ever to combat this common enemy. HCHF also called upon all parties to armed conflicts around the world to seize this opportunity to let wisdom prevail and turn to dialogue, as the only way to settle conflicts and bring just and lasting peace for all mankind.

HCHF greatly appreciated the strenuous efforts led by the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, which lasted for months, to adopt this humanitarian pause. HCHF reiterated its appeal for a greater human solidarity to combat the pandemic and to help those affected by it, particularly refugees, displaced people, and people forced to flee their homes due to conflict.


Ministry of Energy launches platform for businesses to showcase products to fight COVID-19

ABU DHABI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Ministry of Energy and Industry has announced the development of a new national platform dedicated to showcasing products and equipment that can be used in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The products will be listed on the digital platform for the industrial sector in the country, which was previously launched in coordination with the Departments of Economic Development, DED, of each of the seven emirates and members of the Industrial Coordination Council.
Suhail Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Industry, said the COVID-19 platform is designed to support the healthcare system in the country and urged national businesses to register their COVID-19 related products on the platform.
He praised the flexibility shown by national manufacturers in re-designing production lines and raising production capacities to meet consumer needs during the current crisis, which had a great impact on the sustainability of product availability in the country.
The development of a unified database for national businesses and products will further enhance the country’s readiness for any similar crisis that may arise in future.
Eng. Sharif Salim Al Olama, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Energy and Industry, said the pandemic had taken the global industrial sector largely by surprise and changed the strategic priorities to manufacture medical products and personal protective equipment as the demand for these products soared.
He also stressed the importance of enhancing the production capacities of the UAE’s industries to meet domestic needs and maintain the country’s leading role in supporting regional and international supply chains with critical products.
Eng. Osama Amir, Assistant Under-Secretary for Industry Affairs, said the first phase of the platform will provide decision-makers and buyers with a directory of products that are vital to helping fight the pandemic and provides contact details of the manufacturers. Upon completion, the platform will provide production capacity data and will act as an effective link between domestic manufacturers and buyers from inside and outside the country.
The COVID-19 products directory will be hosted on the UAE Makes platform, the digital portal for the industrial sector, which allows investors and entrepreneurs to communicate with any party within the country’s industrial ecosystem.
The UAE aims to attract investments in the industrial sector and facilitate decision-making by providing a comprehensive system of information, policies, regulations and procedures for industrial licences at a national level.

Dubai Tourism shares industry outlook with stakeholders

DUBAI, 4th July, 2020 (WAM) — The Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, Dubai Tourism, hosted a virtual forum for stakeholders and partners to share its industry outlook ahead of the city’s reopening to international tourists on 7th July. The forum provided a first-hand insight into current and post-pandemic strategies that will help accelerate tourism momentum and position Dubai as a safe global destination.

The online forum is part of Dubai Tourism’s efforts to further enhance collaboration with stakeholders through regular top-level industry engagements, which are crucial to accelerate the revival process, highlight the city’s world class health and safety standards, and encourage travellers to make Dubai a must-visit destination.

Presided by Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism, the forum was attended by nearly 2000 key executives from the aviation, travel and hospitality sectors and across tourism touchpoints.

The forum discussed plans for reopening the city to foreign tourists, the local and global impact of the pandemic, future industry trends, global marketing initiatives, business events in Dubai, domestic tourism, and Dubai’s summer events that form part of its annual Retail Calendar.

Helal Almarri, commented: “Under the visionary leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and based on the follow up by H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, a robust strategy was developed to manage the pandemic with the key priority being to safeguard the health and wellbeing of citizens, residents and guests. Now, as we get nearer to reopening the city to tourists, we are encouraged by the success of the strong procedures deployed across sectors that have reinforced Dubai’s commitment to the health and safety of visitors when they start arriving from 7th July, a development that will be a turning point in the tourism sector’s road to recovery.” “The effective management of COVID-19, our three-phase programme to revive the sector and the citywide reopening of tourism facilities including hotels and airports, as well as the resumption of flights by our leading carriers are testament to the significant efforts made to welcome tourists back to Dubai. However, the city could not have made such positive strides without the tireless efforts of our public health authorities and the continuous cooperation between government entities and our stakeholders that supported the resumption of activity in various sectors without compromising on health and safety protocols,” Almarri added.

The forum highlighted the preventive measures taken so far against COVID-19 that have further elevated the UAE’s standing as one of the world’s safest countries. The UAE is globally ranked No.3 in testing per million of population. It was also ranked No.3 in an international survey that assessed satisfaction with governments’ response to the pandemic.

Dubai’s tourism sector remains optimistic due to positive factors and indicators including the gradual reopening of borders; the lifting of travel restrictions in other countries; and the resumption of passenger flights by our key partners Emirates, which will operate flights to over 50 cities this month, and flydubai, which has resumed services to several destinations. Dubai remains top of mind for travellers and ranks high in global internet search rankings for tourist destinations. The city hopes to further consolidate its position by forging links with more countries that will be opening up over the course of the summer.

The stakeholders were also briefed on the extensive marketing and outreach programmes launched by Dubai Tourism in key international markets. These campaigns seek to ensure the city continues to be front of mind among travellers so that they choose to visit Dubai when it is safe to travel. Programmes launched by Dubai Tourism include a series of digital activations #Till We Meet Again and the recently launched #We Will See You Soon campaign. Dubai Tourism is also rolling out initiatives with social media and technology partners to sustain interest in Dubai as the destination of choice. These include a Discover Dubai VR Hub, a collaboration with Google that provides prospective travellers the opportunity to obtain a cardboard headset to view 360-degree videos of Dubai via their mobile phones. The Discover Dubai VR Hub also allows travellers to explore select attractions in Dubai from every angle through the Google Street View feature.

Over 350 influencers were also deployed to take the Dubai story in 14 different languages to a global audience spanning 18 markets, which yielded over 21 million engagements across multiple social media platforms. The marketing activities are designed to convey positive messages about travel in today’s environment, Dubai’s preparedness, high standards of quality and safety, the unique experiences that await visitors and also address traveller concerns across every touchpoint in their journey.

Another topic that was widely discussed was the in-city activations and campaigns, particularly those that benefit the retail and hospitality sectors during the summer period such as the Dubai Summer Surprises, which kicks off on 9th July. It was pointed out that the retail sector is gearing to provide exciting new experiences to residents and visitors. With malls now allowed to operate at 100 per cent capacity with no age limitations on visitors, and more residents expected to spend their summer vacation in Dubai, footfall at malls is set to increase.

The virtual gathering also discussed the economic stimulus package to ensure business continuity and sustainability, as well as detailed procedures for welcoming tourists to Dubai. It was emphasised that tourists must present on arrival at Dubai airports a valid COVID-19 negative certificate based on a PCR test they have done four days prior to travel or undergo testing on arrival in Dubai.

At the end of the forum, Almarri answered a wide range of questions related to anti-COVID-19 measures, the process that tourists must follow on arrival in Dubai, testing procedures, quarantine measures, reopening of other commercial activities, city excursions, weddings and business events.