Dubai: The Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) and the International Centre for Biosaline Agriculture, (ICBA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to complete the construction of the Emirates Soil Museum in Dubai.

The museum, set to open in December, will act as a unique hub for soil education, and will be the first of its kind in the Gulf Cooperation Countries and the Middle East and North Africa regions.

The MoU was signed by Mohammad Saif Al Suwaidi, director-deneral of ADFD, and Dr Ismahane Elouafi, director-general of ICBA.

The museum will provide vital information on the critical role of soil in the natural environment and demonstrate the importance of soil in urban planning and how it is the underlining measure to manage and secure food sources.

“At ADFD, we possess the expertise, know-how and resources to profoundly drive socio-economic growth, stemming from 45 years of experience and the successful development of 481 projects, 55 of which fostered expansions in the sector of agriculture and irrigation,” said Al Suwaidi.

Elouafi said that soil is a non-renewable resource, and therefore it is essential to ensure its preservation for food security and a sustainable future. “This requires continued public awareness of the importance of soil and the negative impact of unsustainable uses of soil. Therefore, we are setting up the Emirates Soil Museum with support from the Government of the UAE, and in particular Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, so that the museum will serve as a repository of knowledge for scholars and the general public who are interested in soil preservation,” said Elouafi.

The funding will equip the exterior landscape with interactive learning features, enhance the interior exhibits with augmented reality, advanced learning modules, develop an engaging and user-friendly website for children, and cover operating costs for 24 months.