Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid, Shaikh Saif and Mohammad Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future, during the cabinet meeting in Abu Dhabi. Image Credit: WAM

Abu Dhabi: The UAE vowed to continue its efforts to ensure that all Emiratis are provided with housing and means of a comfortable and dignified life.

The pledge was made by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, as he chaired a Cabinet meeting at the Presidential Palace in Abu Dhabi yesterday (Tuesday). “The UAE Cabinet is a dynamic government with a futuristic vision. It includes effective federal bodies and integrated work teams to support various pivotal sector and contribute to realising government priorities and national goals,” Shaikh Mohammad said.

The meeting outlined achievements and milestones in 2018 and the national plan for 2019, in the presence of Lieutenant General Shaikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, and Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs.

Remaining among the top nations requires exerting more efforts and encouraging work teams to achieve further milestones by building on the past achievements.

- Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum

The 2018 outcomes and most important decisions and policies, which reflect the directives of the leadership and contribute to achieving the UAE Vision 2021 and the UAE Centennial 2071, were outlined during the meeting.

“Remaining among the top nations requires pursuing work and exerting more efforts and encouraging work teams to achieve further milestones by building on the past achievements,” the Vice-President emphasised.

The Cabinet adopted 669 resolutions in its 21 meetings last year, reflecting the government’s interest in developing the pivotal sectors in the UAE in accordance with the directives of President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

“I am confident that my team will achieve our goals for 2019 which will lead us to the achievement of the UAE Vision 2021. In 2019, the ‘Year of Tolerance’, we will impress the world with dedicated, patriotic and tolerant Emirati people,” he added.

Among the 2018 achievements, Dh11 billion in social assistance has been allocated to all groups of low income Emiratis for the next three years.

The Cabinet also adopted a plan to establish 7,270 housing units for citizens across the UAE with a budget of 
Dh7 billion, reflecting the leadership’s interest in housing issues and the provision of decent living conditions.

7270

housing units approved for Emiratis at a budget of Dh7 billion last year

The Cabinet approved the largest federal budget of the UAE with a value of Dh180 billion for the next three years. The budget for 2019 was approved at a value of Dh60.3 billion and was allocated to sectors directly related to the Emiratis well-being.

The Cabinet also adopted several important policies aimed at community development in the UAE and activating the role of various groups. The most important was the launching of the National Policy for Senior Emiratis as an integrated care system to ensure a decent life for them and at the same time to ensure their active participation in the development process.

In the education field, the Cabinet adopted the National Strategy for Higher Education 2030 with the aim of graduating generations of Emirati professionals in the vital sectors and ensuring the ranking of UAE’s universities among the top 1,000 international universities.

In health sector, the Cabinet adopted a draft federal law on public health aimed at enhancing the society’s public health, in addition to the adoption of unified national standards for hospitals in order to raise the quality of health services and hospitals.

Also, a number of resolutions and strategies were launched to increase the percentage of Emiratisation, and the establishment of the National Human Resources Development Fund to double and speed up Emiratisation by 200 per cent in less than one year.

The year 2018 witnessed a number of decisions to enable and empower Emirati women including the first legislation of its kind for gender pay equality. In the field of foreign investment and attracting talent, a new foreign investment law was approved last year allowing foreigners to own 100 per cent in UAE-based businesses and a new system of entry visas for investors and professional talents providing them with a long-term visa for up to 10 years.

In the area of environment and food security, the Cabinet adopted the Water Security Strategy 2036 to ensure sustainable access to water in the country and the National Strategy for Food Security 2051 to enable the production of sustainable food in the UAE and reduce food waste.

Other items on the meeting’s agenda included the approval of a new ‘Emirates Code of Accessible Environment’ to ensure the maximum integration for people of determination in society. The code, which will be implemented on a federal level, will ensure that people of determination live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life.

The code will be implemented in all vital building, transportation system and beyond.

The Cabinet also discussed a number of issues related to the development of government services and government work in a number of ministries and federal entities, as well as other topics on its agenda.