Classifieds powered by Gulf News

UAE looking for a technological leap

Cabinet reshuffle announced by Mohammad gives a big push for sciences and advanced skills

Image Credit: WAM
Welcoming technology: Shaikh Mohammad meets ASIMO — the world’s most advanced robot — after openingthe ‘Museum of Future Government Services’ in Dubai in 2015.
Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: The UAE is looking for another great technological leap forward in a world in which cars drive themselves, machines recognise people, and humanoids travel unattended, performing everything from mundane factory tasks to emergency rescue, the Cabinet reshuffle shows.

“The new era focuses on future skills, future sciences and future technology, as we prepare for the centenary to ensure a better future for our generations,” His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, said as he unveiled the new Cabinet on Thursday.

“We want the UAE to become the world’s most prepared country for artificial intelligence,” Shaikh Mohammad said on his twitter account on Thursday.

To keep pace with the rapid advance of artificial intelligence-oriented and other advanced technologies, Shaikh Mohammad appointed Omar Bin Sultan Al Olama, 27, who headed the UAE Artificial Intelligence Strategy, as the Minister of State for Artificial intelligence, and Sara Al Ameri, 30, who chairs the UAE Council of Scientists, as the Minister of State for Advanced Sciences.

“The new government will catapult the UAE into its prosperous centenary which aims at fostering knowledge, science and research as well as engaging the youth in the leadership of the nation,” Shaikh Mohammad said.

Shaikh Mohammad assigned Al Olama to lead efforts to make the UAE the world’s best prepared country for artificial intelligence.

Experts say self-driving cars, factory robots and a new class of farm hands known as ag-robots are already demonstrating what increasingly mobile machines can do.

Shaikh Mohammad instructed that Al Ameri will be in charge of research and development and building capable scientists. She also heads the UAE Council of Scientists and the nation’s Mars Mission. “We want hundreds of models like Sara to contribute to the prosperous future of the UAE,” Shaikh Mohammad said.

The new government — the 13th in the UAE’s history — saw the appointment of six new ministers, including three women. The new Cabinet is made up of 31 ministers, including nine women. So, the representation of women in the Cabinet has increased to 29 per cent.

Honing AI skills

As the UAE has identified artificial intelligence and machine learning as the next big areas of innovation, Shaikh Mohammad has assigned the Minister of Higher Education to prepare people at the front lines of the revolution, that means developing and honing a blend of programming and data analytics skills, with the necessary business overlay in this new art.

Shaikh Mohammad said Ahmad Abdullah Humaid Bel Houl Al Falasi,

Minister of State for Higher Education, will be tasked with the additional portfolio of Advanced Skills.

“My brother Ahmad [Bel Houl] is in charge of imbuing national talent with the skills of the future. Advanced technology will create new jobs and make half of existing jobs redundant within just 10 years.

“We have also charged my brother Ahmad Bel Houl with heading the Federal Authority for Government Human Resources to make sure our national talent are ready and armed with the advanced skills of the future.”

Food security

The one area where the UAE needs to show continuous vigilance is in stability because, as a desert nation, about 80 per cent of its food supply comes from lands more amenable to food production, making it essential for the UAE to manage the risks to the stability of source countries, including those where the UAE seeks to invest or has invested in the agri-food sector — in Africa, Latin America or the Middle East.

Shaikh Mohammad assigned a new portfolio of food security to a state minister to be able to manage this risk in the long term — to produce more of the country’s food needs locally.

Under the current system, the UAE Government and the national food industry keep a healthy balance between self-sufficiency and imports.

Shaikh Mohammad said Mariam Al Muhairi has been appointed Minister of State of Food Security to ensure the future food security of the nation, with respect to research, planning, and technology.

“Food security is a national issue of the future, necessitating research, knowledge, and projects. Our faith in our youth is high,” Shaikh Mohammad said.

Emiratisation

Shaikh Mohammad was concerned over the slow pace of recruitment of citizens by the private sector and appointed Nasser Bin Thani Al Hameli as the Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation. “We are still slow in the Emiratisation drive and Nasser faces a large task,” he said.

“We also announce the appointment of Hessa Bint Eisa Bu Humaid as the Minister of Community Development. The Emarati household is our biggest bet for the cohesion of society. My wishes for Hessa’s success,” Shaikh Mohammad said.

Tolerance

Shaikh Mohammad appointed “my brother Nahyan Bin Mubarak [Al Nahyan] as the Minister of Tolerance. Brother Nahyan is an Emarati face recognised both on the Arab level and internationally. He is a significant credit to UAE soft power,” Shaikh Mohammad said.

“Brother Nahyan Bin Mubarak, with his extensive social credit, and wide-reaching international connections, commands the admiration of all segments of society, and no one is more suited to instill the value of tolerance in the UAE and the region,” he added.

Culture and knowledge development

Shaikh Mohammad also announced the appointment of Noora Mohammad Al Kaabi as the Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development. “With her experience in both culture and the media, she will aptly continue brother Nahyan’s journey in the ministry,” Shaikh Mohammad said.

“We also announce the appointment of brother Zaki Nussaibah as the Minister of State. He was a companion of Shaikh Zayed, contemporary to his journey, and he contributed valiantly to the development of the nation,” Shaikh Mohammad said.

 

What Mohammad said about these ministers

Omar Bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence

“We want the UAE to become the world’s most prepared country for artificial intelligence … The new Government will catapult the UAE into its prosperous centenary which aims at fostering knowledge, science and research as well as engaging the youth in the leadership of the nation.”

Sara Al Amiri, Minister of State for Advanced Sciences

“Sara will be in charge of R&D or research and development and building capable scientists. Sara also heads the UAE Council of Scientists and the nation’s Mars Mission. We want hundreds of models like Sara to contribute to the prosperous future of the UAE.”

Ahmad Abdullah Humaid Bel Houl Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Skills

“My brother Ahmad [Bel Houl] is in charge of imbuing national talent with the skills of the future. Advanced technology will create new jobs and make half of existing jobs redundant within just 10 years … We have also charged my brother Ahmad Bel Houl with heading the Federal Authority for Government Human Resources to make sure our national talent are ready and armed with the advanced skills of the future.”

Mariam Al Muhairi, Minister of State for Food Security

“Food security is a national issue of the future, necessitating research, knowledge, and projects. Our faith in our youth is high.”

Hessa Bint Eisa Bu Humaid, Minster of Community Development

“The Emirati household is our biggest bet for the cohesion of society. My wishes for Hessa’s success.”

Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance

“Brother Nahyan is an Emirati face recognised both on the Arab level and internationally. He is a significant credit to UAE soft power ... Brother Nahyan Bin Mubarak, with his extensive social credit, and wide-reaching international connections, commands the admiration of all segments of society, and no one is more suited to instill the value of tolerance in the UAE and the region.”

Nasser Bin Thani Al Hameli, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation

“We are still slow in the Emiratisation drive and Nasser faces a large task.”

Noora Mohammad Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development

“With her [Noora’s] experience in both culture and the media, she will aptly continue brother Nahyan’s journey in the ministry.”

Zaki Nussaibah, Minister of State

“We also announce the appointment of brother Zaki Nussaibah as the Minister of State. He was a companion of [the founding father of the UAE] Shaikh Zayed, contemporary to his journey, and he contributed valiantly to the development of the nation.”

Loading...