Abu Dhabi; The Federal National Council (FNC) on Tuesday demanded the government fast-track the creation of a federal demographics council, which aims to strike a balance in the country's population structure.
His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, approved the creation of the council in November.
Sultan Saqr Al Suwaidi, a lawmaker from Dubai, said although a decision to set up such an important council had been taken in 2008, it has not yet seen the light of day.
He said the government must pay more attention to the population imbalance.
Lieutenant General Shaikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, who leads the council, told the council in a statement work is ongoing to set up the body.
Latest studies showed Emiratis make up 16.5 per cent of the population.
Lawmakers earlier called for political decisions to address this challenge, called it a threat to national security. "The demographic and emiratisation issues require political decisions by the highest authorities and these decisions must be binding on all public and private institutions and businesses. The Cabinet had taken several decisions to address the demographic and emiratisation issues, but they were not fully enforced," Abdul Rahim Abdul Latif Abdullah Al Shahin, a member from Ras Al Khaimah, said.
Sultan Ahmad Abdullah Mohammad Al Mu'athin Danhani, a member from Fujairah, expressed hope the council would work out strategies and solutions to the demographic and emiratisation issues.
The new council will review demographic policies in order to develop national demographic strategies and initiatives through coordination with other stakeholders.
It will also gather information, conduct demographic studies and research and establish a database on the demographic breakdown of the UAE.
It will coordinate with local departments to ensure a unified policy to address demographic issues and maintain synergy between the sustainable development and demographic policies.