UAE Cabinet reviews achievements of national R&D, food security councils during 2023 - GulfToday

UAE Cabinet reviews achievements of national R&D, food security councils during 2023

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Sheikh Mohammed chairs Cabinet meeting at Qasr Al Watan in Abu Dhabi.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, chaired the UAE Cabinet meeting at Qasr Al Watan, Abu Dhabi, in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Presidential Court; and Lt. General Sheikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior.

Sheikh Mohammed said, "I chaired, today at Qasr Al Watan, the UAE Cabinet’s last meeting before the summer break. First things first, we congratulated our children, students, of schools and universities alike, on the completion of their academic year, and expressed our thanks to all education sector employees, including the Education and Human Recourses Council, presided by Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed. We also reviewed the main preparatory works for the next academic year. To the graduates, we extend our best wishes for professional success, and to all students, we wish perpetual success."

Sheikh Mohammed said,  "Today during the meeting, we reviewed a report on the achievements of the Emirates Council for Food Security in 2023, which included increasing the reserve of strategic food products in the UAE by 85 per cent in 2023, raising the grain storage capacity in the country by 34 percent, providing an emergency storage capacity of hundreds of thousands of tons, and the signing of several international partnership agreements on food systems and sustainable agriculture. Our target is to sustainably ensure our food security, at all times, under any circumstances.”

Sheikh Mohammed added, "Today, we also reviewed the achievements report of the Emirates Research and Development Council for the year 2023, approved our national priorities for research and development, approved a set of global challenges programmes to finance research and development, notably research related to water desalination, and approved the development of a comprehensive strategy for intellectual property in this sector”

Sheikh Mohammed added, "Today, during the Cabinet meeting, we approved hosting several specialised international conferences and events, and reviewed the performance results of the Emirates Investment Authority and the financial results of the General Pensions and Social Security Authority.

Sheikh Mohammed added, ‘We wish everyone a wonderful summer break, along with their family members. We wish for our children to spend this vacation time in constructive activities that will bring them value, and further develop their skills and abilities. Our directive to everyone is that our country must remain lively and active, filled with vitality, and ongoing projects, in summer and winter alike.”

During the meeting, the Cabinet reviewed the achievements report of the Emirates Research and Development Council for the year 2023.

Main projects and initiatives implemented by the Council included: launching the development of a national framework for research and development performance data, approval of the Policy of the National Priorities for Research and Development, as well as conducting several studies on attracting research and development centres, creating the optimal environment for attracting and retaining research and development talent, developing an intellectual property strategy related to research and development, and updating intellectual property requirements in this regard.

The projects implemented by the Emirates Research and Development Council in 2023 also included the launch of the Global Challenges Programme to finance research and development to address the priorities and challenges related to water desalination, and the launch of the National Program for Research and Development Leaders, a pioneering programme specialised in research and development management, in addition to updating several national policies that support the UAE’s efforts in the matter.

During the meeting, the Cabinet reviewed the achievements of the Emirates Council for Food Security during 2023, and the national effort made to ensure that food is safely and sustainably available in the country at all times. Most prominent achievements included launching the UAE Declaration on Sustainable Agriculture, Resilient Food Systems and Climate Action, which was joined by 159 signatory countries, the development of a national programme to closely monitor the growth of children younger than 5 years old and enhance their health, improving mechanisms for taking essential growth measurements, analysing data, raising parents’ awareness, and training professionals to successfully implement the programme.

Achievements include also increasing the percentage purchased by government entities involved in the selected locally produced main food types to 59.2 per cent through the "Enhancing the Sustainability of National Farms” initiative, increasing the number of beneficiary farms to 1,260 farms in the UAE, and raising the reserve of strategic food products by 85 per cent in 2023, increasing the total grain storage capacity in the country by 34 percent.

The Emirates Council for Food Security also developed in 2023 a unified guideline for food and beverages aimed at improving the quality of food and beverages provided at schools. 

The achievements of the Emirates Council for Food Security during the year 2023 also included launching the Food Innovation Hubs Global Initiative and accelerating the use of technology and innovation in transforming food systems through signing an agreement between the "Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives” foundation and the World Economic Forum, and signing a memorandum of understanding with the Emirates Development Bank (EDB) regarding the programme on financing the introduction of technology in agricultural (AgriTech) into traditional farms, with a total funding pool of AED100 million, and announcing the expansion of the electricity tariff support in the northern regions of the UAE, to include all farm owners covered by the Emirates Water and Electricity Company."

The Cabinet also examined the preliminary results of the UAE committee tasked with assessing damage from floods and rain on federal establishments and facilities. The Cabinet approved implementing urgent maintenance work within health facilities affiliated with the Emirates Health Services - UAE, in all affected areas in the country.

In the meeting, the Cabinet approved the issuance of a Cabinet decision regarding the services provided by the UAE Media Council and the transfer of media services currently provided by the Ministry of Culture, to the UAE Media Council. Additionally, the Cabinet also approved the reformulation of the Committee of Services Trade Measurement and renamed it to the "UAE Committee for Preparing the Balance of Payments,” headed by Dr. Thani Bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade. Among other vital duties, the Committee will be charged with identifying the sources of data used in preparing the UAE balance of payments and coordinating with the relevant federal and local authorities on the matter, to ensure data accuracy and availability.

To further advance the quality and safety of products in the UAE, the Cabinet approved a decision on the technical regulations for emergency communications in vehicles (Ecall), in order to shorten the response time of emergency services by 40 percent, which will ultimately contribute to cutting down the death toll on the roads by 2 to 10 percent and reduce serious injury cases by 2 to 15 percent.

This seeks also to strengthen the country’s globally leading position by ranking the UAE among the top countries in the world in terms of the best response time to emergency calls, which is 4 minutes only.

The Cabinet also adopted a decision regarding the technical guidelines of household detergents, updating Cabinet Resolution No. (3) of 2014 regarding the UAE Law for the Control of Detergents. The new update is in line with the approved technical regulations UAE.S/GSO 2555:2021 "General Safety for Household Detergents", and explains the controls and requirements regarding facilitating consumer’s access to explanatory data for detergent components and any added preservatives, in all household cleaners to ensure the optimal environmental protection and consumer safety.

As part of the effort to strengthen the country’s leading position globally in hosting and organising international events, the Cabinet approved hosting the International Chemistry Olympiads (IChO) in the UAE. The event is regarded as the most prestigious competition in chemistry in the world attracting talent and distinguished high school students in chemistry from all continents.

The Cabinet also approved hosting the 7th Arab Competition Forum 2026, which was launched by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for West Asia (ESCWA) in partnership between UN Trade and Development is an intergovernmental organisation (UNCTAD) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and hosting the 5th Scientific Middle East Veterinary Conference and the 9th World Conference on Research in Teaching and Education. 

Additionally, the Cabinet approved the country’s accession to the 2007 Nairobi International Convention on the Removal of Wrecks and approved the ratification of an agreement between the UAE and the Republic of Colombia regarding the comprehensive economic partnership, and reviewed the report on the UAE’s participation in 7 international events and conferences, including the Joint Annual Meetings of Arab Financial Institutions, and the meeting of the Regular Session of the Council of Arab Finance Ministers in Egypt, which witnessed the issuance of several decisions, particularly the transfer of the headquarters of the Arab Authority for Agricultural Investment and Development to Dubai, temporarily, the approval of the new strategic directives of the Arab Monetary Fund, and the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development allocating $500 million to finance private sector development projects in Member States.

During the meeting, a report she light on the state’s participation in the annual meetings of the Board of Governors of the Islamic Development Bank in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Islamic Development Bank, and the UAE’s participation in the "Doha Dialogue", in Qatar, on Labour Mobility between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the African Union (AU). It also highlighted the UAE's participation in the 112th International Labor Conference in Geneva, participation in the 2024 Arab International Banking Summit, in Istanbul, and participation in the International Women’s Forum, in Mauritania.

Another report on the activities and outcome of the UAE National Member Committee at the World Energy Council for 2023, was examined during the Cabinet’s meeting. Some of the most important projects introduced by the committee was its participation in developing the World Energy Trilemma Index, and updating the data used within the World Energy Trilemma Index.

In government affairs, the Cabinet reviewed the performance report of the Emirates Investment Authority spanning the period from 1st January to 31st March 2024, and reviewed the work report of the Board of Directors of the General Pensions and Social Security Authority for 2023.

WAM

 


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