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WAM: UAE, Montenegro agree to expand joint economic cooperation in vital sectors

DUBAI 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — The UAE and Montenegro have agreed to bolster cooperation across areas of trade, investment, agriculture, food security, renewable energy, transport, entrepreneurship, start-ups, and innovative industries during the second meeting of the Joint Economic Committee held in Dubai.

The two sides affirmed their interest in diversifying the base of economic exchange, generating more promising investment and business opportunities, sharing expertise and increasing joint investment.

The two sides discussed the possibility of operating direct flights between the two countries to facilitate the movement of investors, traders and businessmen and boost tourism exchange.

Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy, who co-chaired the meeting with Dragica Sekulic, Montenegro’s Economy Minister, said the UAE’s economic plans seek to take Montenegro as a key trading partner in the Balkan region as the UAE will be the main gateway for the Balkan country into the Arab markets.

“Two-way non-oil trade reached US$21 million in the first half of 2019 and $31.2 million by the end of 2018,” Al Mansouri said.

“We are looking forward to a new chapter of cooperation with between the UAE and Montenegro, driven by available economic resources and opportunities and constructive partnerships,” he added.

“The UAE has been the largest foreign investor in vital sectors in her country in 2017 and 2018 and I hope this momentum continues for years to come,” Sekulic said.

She added that her government is currently working on a flexible plan to attract foreign investors and is hoping to attract more Emirati investors.

According to her, there are wide prospects for joint economic cooperation and new partnerships.

On Expo Dubai 2020, her country would use the ideal platform to connect with global investors and promote Montenegro’s trade potential, she said in conclusion.

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WAM: RTA awards AED450 million-contract to upgrade Falcon Junction Project

DUBAI, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — In implementation of the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to improve the Al Shandagha Roads Corridor to cope with the sustained urbanisation of the locality, the Roads and Transport Authority, RTA, has awarded a contract for upgrading the Falcon Junction.

The project, which borders Al Khaleej, Khaled bin Al Waleed and Al Ghubaiba Streets will cost about AED450 million. Upon completion, it will link with Shandagha Bridge (Infinity) Northwards.

“The Falcon Junction Improvement Project is part of Al Shandagha Roads Corridor Improvement Project undertaken over five phases extending 13 kilometres, km, along the Sheikh Rashid, Al Mina, Al Khaleej and Cairo Streets. Upgrading the Falcon Junction will ensure free traffic movement across Al Shandagha Corridor (Al Khaleej and Al Mina Streets), and step up the intake of both streets. It will also enhance traffic safety, provide entry/exit points for Rashid Port, and provide more parking spaces under the new bridge to serve the area,” said Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, Director-General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the RTA.

“The project includes the construction of two bridges along Al Khaleej Street. The first bridge extends 750 metres, m, northwards, and the second, stretches 1,075m southwards; comprising six lanes in each direction with a capacity of 12,000 vehicles per hour, per direction.

“It also covers the construction of a single-lane 250m bridge for a right turn from Khaled bin Al Waleed Street to Al Khaleej Street with a capacity of 1,600 vehicles per hour. The construction of a two-lane 500m tunnel for left turns from Khaled bin Al Waleed St to Al Mina St capable of handling 3,200 vehicles per hour, in addition to a surface signalised junction linking Al Khaleej with Al Ghubaiba and Khaled bin Al Waleed Streets. The project includes other works like pavements, lighting, traffic systems, rainwater drainage network and irrigation systems,” Al Tayer explained.

Due to the massive scope of Al Shandagha Corridor Project, which has a cost tag of AED5.35 billion, it had been split into five phases, two of which have been completed. Works completed included upgrading the junction of the Sheikh Rashid-Oud Metha Streets junction (Wafi Junction), and the intersection of the Sheikh Rashid-Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Streets, which included the construction of two bridges on the Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Street comprising of two lanes in each direction. It also included the construction of a one-lane bridge from Zabeel Street in the direction of Sheikh Rashid Street and a tunnel on the Sheikh Rashid Street in the direction of Al Mankhool Junction comprising four lanes in each direction.

Work is currently underway in Phase III, which includes six contracts covering the construction of Al Shandagha (Infinity) Bridge featuring an iconic architectural design that will be a unique landmark for Dubai worldwide together with a slip road at Bur Dubai and bridges linking Al Shandagha Tunnel.

Works include improvements on the Corniche Street, junctions of Al Khaleej Street, the Falcon Junction as well as entry/exit points of Deira Islands at Abu Baker Al Siddique Street. Bridges extend 8.5km, tunnels span 500m, and surface roads extend 8km in total. The project, which involves the construction of 10 surface junctions, will be completed by the end of 2022.

Phase IV of the project covers improvements on Al Khaleej Street along with its intersection with Abu Hail Street, and the improvement of the junction of Sheikh Rashid with Jumeirah, Al Mina and Al Mankhool Streets. This requires the construction of bridges stretching 3.4km, tunnels extending 2.25km, six surface junctions, and roads extending 5.1km. This phase is expected to be completed by 2025. Phase V covers the construction of Southwards bridges leading to Deira extending 1.5km, which are set for completion by 2027.

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corona virus COVID-19 Local News

WAM: UAE health authorities’s timely action against COVID-19 commendable, says Ahmed bin Saeed

DUBAI, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, has thanked the UAE’s health authorities for their 24/7 commitment and efficiency in keeping the country’s travellers, communities and the cities safe during the new coronavirus, COVID-19, crisis.

H.H. Sheikh Ahmed said: “We are conscious that as a country, which is a global travel hub and has the world’s busiest international airport in Dubai, we have the responsibility of rolling out the world’s best in class health and safety measures.

“The health authorities have been working with international bodies and experts to ensure we educate our communities and travellers on precautions and hand hygiene. Our highly trained teams are working around the clock to offer the maximum levels of care to our communities, and are monitoring international travellers who are transiting through or arriving in the UAE. They continue to do a stellar job, and their efforts will help our country retain its status as a global travel hub,” he affirmed.

The World Health Organisation, WHO, has pegged the risk assessment of COVID-19 at the highest level, but is yet to declare it a pandemic. According to WHO, on 4th March, 119 countries have not detected any cases of the virus. Of the 75 countries with cases, 47 have 10 cases or less. This means travel continues to be safe as long as governments and people take the right actions and precautions.

At Dubai International airport, every traveller goes through unobtrusive thermal screening. For travellers and crew who are arriving from counties of concern and COVID-19 hotspots, the health authorities conduct medical checks that include enhanced temperature checks and nose swabs. When they detect a positive case, they follow international guidelines and conduct additional tests, which in turn help to support and treat the person.

The dedicated medical teams at the airport try to complete the screening of passengers and crew of a flight within 40 minutes.

Emirates Airline has implemented enhanced disinfection procedures on all flights arriving to and departing from Dubai. The airline’s operational teams are using stronger, approved chemicals and materials, and using deeper cleaning techniques to thoroughly disinfect aircraft cabins. All aircraft have High Efficiency Particulate Air, HEPA, filters, which are proven to remove more than 99 percent of viruses in the cabin environment.

The precautions and measures rolled out by the health authorities are continuing to make air travel safe for local communities, international travellers and employees.

Sheikh Ahmed concluded: “The UAE has lived through some of the world’s worst times – whether pandemics, natural disasters or recessions – and has always emerged stronger, fitter and better. I am confident it will be no different this time around. We remain vigilant. The UAE stands together as one.”

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WAM: Abu Dhabi Exports Office approves AED550 million to finance UAE exports in 2020

ABU DHABI, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — The Executive Committee of the Abu Dhabi Exports Office, ADEX, approved the allocation of AED550 million (US$150 million) to support the strategic expansion of the nation’s export businesses and continued diversification of the UAE economy.

During its first meeting for the year, the committee discussed a number of requests to finance exports, as well as reviewed the strategies developed to promote services provided by ADEX locally and globally for the coming period.

Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of Abu Dhabi Fund for Development and Chairman of the Executive Committee of ADEX, said, “The Committee approved the allocation of AED 550 million to facilitate direct loans to foreign buyers as well as lines of credit for international financial institutions exclusively available to importers of goods and services from UAE companies.”

“The ADEX Executive Committee is focused on developing a wide range of innovative financial products and tools that better enable UAE exporters to successfully compete for new business growth opportunities in rapidly expanding emerging markets across Africa, Asia and around the world. Allocating these funds in support of our national export companies represents a major step advancing the ADEX mandate to increase the volume and value of UAE exports and drive sustainable national economic expansion,” added Al Suwaidi.

In addition to approving the budget allocation, the Executive Committee discussed the operational framework for how to utilise the financial solutions offered by ADEX to support UAE exporters to encourage national companies to increase their share of exports and promote broader UAE economic expansion.

Saeed Al Dhaheri, ADEX Acting Director General, said, “ADEX is collaborating with chambers of commerce and economic development departments across the UAE in a unified effort to help national export companies understand how to leverage the power of ADEX to safely and securely expand into strategic international growth markets. We want all UAE exporters and their foreign buyers to know that the UAE stands behind them as a financial catalyst for mutually beneficial business development.”

ADEX was established by ADFD in 2019 to strategically advance its expanded mandate to support the continued diversification and sustainable growth of the UAE economy in support of the direction set forth in UAE Vision 2021, Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, and UAE Centennial 2071.

ADEX provides direct loans and guarantees to overseas buyers from the public and private sectors seeking to import goods and services from the UAE. ADEX funding and guarantees are designed to support national businesses of all sizes across the UAE in all non-crude oil sectors.

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WAM: One million visas featuring ‘Dubai, Capital of Arab Media 2020’ logo issued

DUBAI, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — The General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai, GDRFA-Dubai, said it has issued more than one million visas featuring the ‘Dubai, Capital of Arab Media 2020’ logo over the last four months. The logo appears at the bottom left-hand corner of the visa page.

The initiative seeks to highlight the UAE’s status as a regional and global media hub as well as the efforts of Dubai’s leadership in driving media industry growth in the region.

Major General Mohammed Ahmed Al Marri, Director General of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai said that the decision is part of its efforts to raise the profile of Dubai’s achievements among global audiences. Highlighting the recognition Dubai received from the Council of Arab Information Ministers will create further interest among worldwide audiences in Dubai as an investment and tourism destination, he added.

Major General Al Marri further said the recognition coincides with Dubai hosting the MENA region’s first Expo 2020 which will enhance the city’s status as a global commercial hub and a bridge between the east and the west.

“These achievements encourage all government entities to strive harder to contribute to the UAE’s continued progress and achievements across all fields. The GDRFA-Dubai is keen to showcase both the UAE’s and Dubai’s key accomplishments and highlight the remarkable progress it has made over the last five decades,” he added.

Welcoming GDRFA-Dubai’s initiative, Mona Al Marri, Vice Chairman and Managing Director of the Dubai Media Council and Director General of the Government of Dubai Media Office, GDMO, said, “We appreciate the unique initiative taken by GDRFA-Dubai to feature the logo in visas issued out of Dubai.

“Over the last two decades, key Dubai initiatives such as the Arab Media Forum and the Arab Journalism Award have created a platform for the region’s media industry to engage in dialogue and knowledge-sharing.”

She further said the vision set by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum 20 years ago helped create a solid base for Dubai’s leadership in the media industry, which today has culminated in its recognition as the ‘Capital of Arab Media for 2020’.

Dubai is a vibrant global media hub with more than 4,000 companies across media sectors, she noted.

Showcasing the logo will contribute to reinforcing Dubai’s reputation as a media hub regionally and globally, she added.

 

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WAM: ‘Emirati women should be proud of their accomplishments’, says Sheikha Fatima ahead of International Women’s Day

ABU DHABI, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — ‘Mother of the Nation’ and Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, today congratulated Emirati women and women all around the world on the occasion of International Women’s Day, which is observed on 8th March.

In a statement released on the occasion, H.H. Sheikha Fatima, who is also President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, said, “Everyday in the UAE is a day for women’s empowerment and support,” adding that efforts for empowering Emirati women is “continuous” and occurring at “all levels”, under the country’s leadership.

Sheikha Fatima noted that today, and with the support of the leadership, Emirati women occupy half the seats at the Federal National Council, calling it an important achievement that “will push women to give more.”

She also noted that Emirati women fill positions across many sectors – as minister, parliamentarian, doctor, engineer and even soldier.

“Emirati women should be proud of their accomplishments and for being an essential partner in the country’s development, and for becoming a regional and global role model to be emulated,” Her Highness said.

She concluded by expressing her hope to see all women around the world enjoy security, safety, empowerment, and the fulfilment of their aspirations.

 

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corona virus COVID-19 Local News

WAM: Dedicated health centre established to monitor Wuhan evacuees at Emirates Humanitarian City

ABU DHABI, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — The UAE has announced the establishment of a preventative health centre within the Emirates Humanitarian City complex, to provide 24-hour health care for Arab students and residents evacuated from Wuhan, China – the epicentre of the coronavirus, COVID-19, outbreak.

Joint humanitarian efforts saw the completion of the project within 48 hours since the UAE’s announcement of evacuating students from neighbouring countries from the city of Wuhan on Wednesday. Run by qualified and trained medical teams, the centre is equipped with the necessary medical equipment and supplies to provide care and handle COVID-19, including airborne infection isolation rooms.

The announcement follows the directives issued by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

Dr. Musleh Al Ahbabi, an official responsible for infectious diseases and public health care programmes in the country, confirmed to the Emirates News Agency, WAM, the centre’s readiness to monitor and carry out preventive care to reduce the general risk of transmission of acute respiratory infections disease according to World Health Organisation standards and practices.

Al Ahbabi explained that airborne infection isolation rooms, commonly called negative pressure rooms, are single-occupancy patient care spaces designed to isolate airborne pathogens to a safe containment area. Individuals who may be suspected of carrying the new coronavirus will be placed within these rooms for a period of 14 days – the average incubation period of COVID-19 – where they will be monitored and tested for infection, he noted.

The disease prevention official advised to practice basic protective measures such as the frequent washing of hands; when coughing and sneezing to cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue and discarding of the tissue immediately; and to seek early medical care if symptoms of fever, cough and difficulty in breathing arise.

Al Ahbabi stressed the importance of receiving viable and correct information from government health agencies, and to avoid the circulation of false information about diseases, in general.

WAM/Nour Salman

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WAM: UAE strongly condemns terror attack in Kabul

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation

ABU DHABI, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — The UAE has strongly condemned the terror attack that targeted a gathering in the Afghan capital, Kabul, which resulted in numerous deaths and injuries.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation expressed in a statement its utter denunciation of this criminal act and rejection of all forms of violence, which aim to undermine security and stability and completely contravene all religious and human values and principles.

The Ministry also extended its condolences to the families of victims of this heinous crime while wishing a speedy recovery to the injured.

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WAM: Saudi opens ‘Mataf’ for non-Umrah performers

MAKKAH, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — Saudi Arabia has announced the opening of the Mataf (area for circumambulation around the Holy Kaaba) for non-Umrah performers starting from Saturday, according to the Saudi Press Agency, SPA.

The General President of the Grand Mosque and Prophet’s Mosque Affairs Sheikh Dr. Abdurrahman bin Abdulaziz Al Sudais said the decision came following a royal order by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

He added that there was a “plan drawn up for this purpose.”

This follows a major cleaning and sterilisation operation inside and outside the Grand Mosque.

Sheikh Dr. Al Sudais also stressed the need to adhere to precautionary procedures and cooperate with Grand Mosque workers to maintain public safety.

 

Image Credit: AP

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corona virus COVID-19 Local News

WAM: UAE Press: Challenges mount as world feels sting of virus

UAE Press

ABU DHABI, 7th March, 2020 (WAM) — The rapid spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) has clearly rattled the world, with normal life thrown out of gear, pointed out an editorial published by the English language daily Gulf Today on Saturday.

Business districts are emptying and stock markets have tumbled as the number of coronavirus infections has surpassed 100,000 globally, the newspaper noted.

Across the world, over 3,400 people have died from the virus. There have been more than 100,000 infections in 89 countries and territories and the number is increasing by the day, the daily said.

The editorial went on to say that the main countries affected after mainland China are South Korea (6,284 cases, of which 196 new and 42 deaths), Italy (3,858 cases, 148 deaths), Iran, (4,747 cases, 124 deaths) and France (577 cases, of which 46 new, and nine deaths).

“The challenges are mounting as Bhutan, Cameroon, occupied West Bank, Serbia, and the Vatican have all announced their first cases.

“An increasing number of people in many countries face a new reality as many are asked to stay home from work, schools remain closed, large gatherings and events cancelled.

“One of the most worrisome aspects is also that school closures in 13 countries linked to the COVID-19 virus epidemic have disrupted the education of more than 290 million students, a record number, as per UN education agency UNESCO.

“Italy and India are the latest to shut schools over the deadly coronavirus,” it added.

It further noted that disadvantaged children are the worst-hit by the emergency measures, quoting UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay, who pointed out, “While temporary school closures as a result of health and other crises are not new, unfortunately, the global scale and speed of the current educational disruption is unparalleled and, if prolonged, could threaten the right to education.”

It continued, “A further nine countries have implemented localised school closures: UNESCO estimates that, if these countries close schools nationwide, a further 180 million children will be prevented from attending school.

“The extent of the damage to the global economy caused by COVID-19 moved further into focus on Wednesday as UN economists announced a likely US$50 billion drop in worldwide manufacturing exports in February alone.”

The UAE, on its part, has been taking timely and right measures to tackle the situation, the paper said.

“Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police and Head of Dubai’s Crisis and Disaster Management Team, Major General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri, has made it clear that all concerned authorities are working round the clock in coordination with the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention, MoHAP, and Dubai Health Authority’s, DHA, medical team to implement precautionary measures against COVID-19 and ensure the highest levels of safety and protection for the public.

“Substantial preventive measures have been put in place in various airports and seaports in the emirate.

“Measures have also been taken to screen passengers effectively in a hassle-free manner in order to avoid any delay or inconvenience at the ports of entry.

“Equipment to screen passengers for coronavirus symptoms have been installed at all travel points. Nothing is left to chance and all passengers including transit passengers are being screened.

“MoHAP has urged citizens and foreign residents to avoid travelling abroad due to the spread of COVID-19 in multiple countries,” it stated.

The general public has a definite role to play, the newspaper noted.

As suggested by officials, people should follow basic protective measures such as frequently washing hands; when coughing and sneezing to cover the mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue and discard tissue immediately; and seek early medical care if symptoms of fever, cough and difficulty in breathing arise, concluded the editorial.

 

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WAM: UAE announces recovery of two cases of COVID-19

MOH

ABU DHABI, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — Two Chinese patients of new coronavirus, COVID-19, have recovered, bringing to seven the total recovered cases in the UAE, the Ministry of Health and Prevention, MoHAP, announced on Friday.

With the latest recovery announcement of the two patients, aged 38 and 10, all members of the Chinese family are ”free” from the disease, MoHAP affirmed in a statement.

The MoHAP also reported that 15 cases of different nationalities have tested positive for the virus, taking to 45 the total infections in the country.

According to MoHAP, early monitoring and reporting system has screened 13 COVID-19 cases for one individual each from Thailand, China, Morocco and India, two individuals each from Saudi Arabia, Ethiopia and Iran and three individuals from the UAE. All these cases arrived from abroad. Two cases, each from the UAE and Egypt, have been diagnosed with the virus by active surveillance system for being in close contact with confirmed cases announced previously in connection with the cycling event, the UAE Tour.

Five individuals in close contact with COVID-19 patients have also been screened, placed under health quarantine and subjected to preventive measures to curb the spread of the virus, the statement added..

All cases are being monitored round-the clock, are in a stable condition and are receiving all necessary health care required, MoHAP affirmed.

In the infection prevention and control measures, MoHAP also noted that all concerned authorities in the UAE have joined forces to monitor the situation and take rapid response to prevent the further spread of coronavirus since its outbreak in China.

MoHAP assured that medical facilities have been equipped with all the necessary medical equipment and supplies to provide care and take all measures required to deal with COVID-19, including thermal scanners and infection isolation rooms, following World Health Organisation, WHO, standards.

The Ministry advised the members of the general public to adhere to preventative health and personal hygiene protocols to prevent the spread of the disease and to read the awareness instructions, available on its website and the official websites of health authorities in the UAE and refrain from spreading rumours “The public is also advised to adopt protective health behaviour to avoid infectious diseases, including washing their hands with soap and clean water, and covering the mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing to stop the spread of germs and viruses,” the statement added.

It also advised individuals suffering from respiratory symptoms to avoid crowded and public places to prevent transmission of the disease and protect lives.

 

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WAM: UAE strongly condemns terror attack in Tunisia

ABU DHABI, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — The UAE has strongly condemned the terror attack that targeted a security outpost near the US Embassy in Tunis, the capital of Tunisia.

A security officer was killed and scores of civilians were injured in the attack.

A statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation on Friday expressed the UAE’s utter condemnation of these criminal acts and its firm rejection of all forms of violence and terrorism aimed at destabilising security and stability in contravention of all religious and human values.

The Ministry extended its condolences to the families of the victims and wished the injured a speedy recovery.

 

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WAM: Mohamed bin Zayed gets phone call from British PM

Mohamed bin Zayed   British PM

ABU DHABI, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, received on Friday evening a telephone call from Boris Johnson, British Prime Minister, during which they reviewed the state of affairs of the historic bilateral ties and ways of enhancing joint cooperation.

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed reviewed with the British Prime Minister a wide range of regional and international issues of mutual concern and exchanged views on the latest developments in the Middle East.

The two leaders affirmed their resolve to solidify bilateral ties of friendship, and increase joint cooperation and work across the economic, trade and political fields so as to serve their mutual interests and aspirations of their peoples.

The two sides stressed the importance of intensifying international efforts and their joint act to attain security, peace and development in the region.

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WAM: RTA concludes 3rd Emirati-French Business Summit

ABU DHABI, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority, RTA, has wrapped up the third edition of the Emirati-French Business Engagement Summit held under the theme: ”Future of Mobility and Innovation”.

The summit, which was held in the RTA Head Office, attracted about 220 senior executives and leaders of public and private entities in Dubai and France. Some 45 firms, start-ups, multinational companies and financial institutions took part in the summit together with representatives of several government entities.

“Through the Emirati-French Business Engagement Summit, RTA stressed the importance of maintaining the public-private cooperation. The summit opened new horizons for applying smart technologies and practices in support of the existing and future transit services. This course of action fits well with RTA’s strategy for transport systems and roads networks,” said Ibrahim Al-Haddad, Director of Commercial and Development at RTA’s Strategy and Corporate Governance Sector.

Four vital topics were debated during the summit. The first was related to projects and initiatives about the first and last-mile challenge. It examined Dubai’s strategic objectives and Plan 2020. Discussions touched on the role of the private sector in promoting the first and last-mile strategy along with the challenges of integrating it with the mainstream public transport network.

The second topic was sustainable and environment-friendly transport. Discussions covered RTA’s sustainable transport policy; which is built on sustainable structures, climate change, and the efficient use of resources. A discussion panel was held between RTA and representatives of French companies to examine sustainable transport issues and initiatives.

The third topic related to data analysis and how to apply Artificial Intelligence technologies to future projects. The RTA identified potential mobility data fields such as traffic movement, planning mobility demand, shared transport and smart car parking. The RTA stressed the benefits of big data in improving resources, curbing environmental impact, enhancing customer experience, and boosting public safety.

The fourth topic highlighted the importance of digital transactions such as blockchain, and looked into the RTA’s blockchain projects and roadmap. A session was held to discuss initiatives and ideas contributed by French private firms about blockchain and smart mobility. The RTA’s representatives were engaged with the presentations made and asked for further clarifications of ideas put forward.

Overall, the summit was well received, especially from the French representatives who stated that ideas discussed this time around were unique and different. The interaction of French companies with the RTA representatives was remarkable. The two parties exchanged knowledge about promoting the bilateral relations between the RTA and the French Business Summit, knowledge transfer and best practices in the fields of transport and infrastructure.

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WAM: UAE Wrestling and Judo Federation halts competitions, activities

UAE Wrestling and Judo Federation

ABU DHABI, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — The UAE Wrestling and Judo Federation, UAEWJF, announced on Friday that it has called off all competitions and sports activities until further notice.

In a statement, the Federation said the decision was made in response to advice and directives issued by the country’s health authorities.

The UAEWJF noted that the decision is part of the Foundation’s efforts to maintain the safety of athletes and to cooperate with the UAE’s relevant authorities to take in all precautionary measures to ensure the health and safety of the general public.

The Federation went on to say that all its member clubs must immediately implement the decision.

Commenting on the announcement, Mohamed bin Thaaloob Al Derei, head of the UAEWJF, explained that the decision includes all local and international championships across all age groups and divisions.

He noted that the decision to halt all sports activities does not include the athletes and team preparing for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics 2020, adding that all necessary precautionary measures are implemented to ensure the health and safety of the team.

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WAM: Sharjah Documentation and Archive Authority’s policy discussed

SHARJAH, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — The Drafting Committee of the Sharjah Consultative Council, SCC, during its meeting at the Council’s headquarters, prepared its draft recommendations regarding the discussion of the policy of the Sharjah Documentation and Archive Authority, SDAA.

This was a part of the Council’s sixth meeting of the first regular session of the tenth legislative term.

During the meeting, which was chaired by Dr. Abdullah Ibrahim Al Darmaki, Chairman of the Committee, in the presence of several officials, the attendees discussed the policy of the Sharjah Documentation and Archive Authority, shedding light on the most important issues that would enhance the roles and efforts of the Authority with other government agencies.

Concluding the meeting, and in light of the discussion of the Council’s members, the Drafting Committee approved the recommendations about the work, tasks and powers of the Authority, to be discussed and approved by the Sharjah Consultative Council.

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WAM: March 22 deadline for Abu Dhabi traffic fines’ 50% discount: ADP

ABU DHABI, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — The Abu Dhabi Police, ADP, General Headquarters has urged the public to take advantage of the 50 percent discount on traffic violations committed in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, which ends on 22nd March.

The Abu Dhabi Police called on all motorists to take advantage of the announcement, to ensure payment of their traffic fines within the said period, and to settle their legal status.

ADP also expressed hopes that the initiative will provide drivers with an incentive to reduce the burden of fines incurred as a result of traffic violations and to adhere to roads and traffic systems and laws that ensure the safety and security of the general public.

In December last year, the Abu Dhabi Police announced a 50 percent discount on traffic fines and cancellation of vehicles impounded and black traffic points committed in the emirate before 22nd December 2019, for a period of three months.

 

[Image Source: The National]

 

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WAM: Mohamed bin Zayed and Bill Gates discuss strengthening disease control

Mohammed bin Zayed and Gates

ABU DHABI, 6th March 2020 (WAM) — His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Bill Gates, Co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, today discussed over a phone call ways to enhance humanitarian cooperation in health as well as disease and epidemic control in the light of the success they have achieved in several previous global partnerships and initiatives.

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed and Gates also spoke about the possibility of intensifying cooperation and joint work between UAE’s humanitarian institutions and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to tackle the spread of the coronavirus, COVID-19, and support the efforts of the international community, governments and societies to limit its spread.

They reviewed the most important humanitarian initiatives and partnerships between the two sides which aim to reduce the spread of diseases and epidemics that hinder social and economic development.

The two sides stressed the importance of continuing concerted efforts and enhancing cooperation and coordination between regional and international organisations and institutions handling humanitarian work so as to provide urgent health services, particularly during the current crisis which necessitates a rapid response in most parts of the world.

 

WAM/Hassan Bashir/MOHD AAMIR/Esraa Ismail
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Local News

WAM: UAE leaders congratulate Ghanaian President on National Day

UAE leaders

ABU DHABI, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has sent a message of congratulations to President of Ghana Nana Akufo-Addo on the occasion of his country’s National Day.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, sent similar congratulatory messages to President Akufo-Addo.

 

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Local News

WAM: DEWA first utility in Middle East to receive NFPA 101

DUBAI, 6th March, 2020 (WAM) — Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, DEWA, has announced that it received the National Fire Protection Association Life Safety Code, NFPA 101, from the international safety organisation UL.

A press release issued by the Authority on Friday said that DEWA is the first utility in the Middle East to receive this global recognition and it received the NFPA 101 after a comprehensive audit by UL of DEWA’s warehouses, to ensure all buildings and equipment align with the safety and fire protection standards.

Commenting on the announcement, Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of DEWA, said, “Receiving the NFPA 101 is a new achievement that enhances DEWA’s position at the forefront of international utilities in health and occupational safety, due to its adoption of integrated administrative systems policy to promote the culture of health and safety across all its departments.”

For his part, Dr. Yousef Al Akraf, Executive Vice President of Business Support and Human Resources, commented, “DEWA has successfully assessed compliance with risk management policies in accordance with the requirements of ISO 31000, as well as the Global Risk Award for Building Risk Management Capability from the Institute of Risk Management, in 2013 and 2015, and the ISO 22301 Business Continuity Management for 2016, becoming the first service institution to receive this accreditation in the MENA region.”

WAM/Esraa Ismail/MOHD AAMIR
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All rights for the news and photos reserved to Emirates News Agency WAM