Shaikh Mohammad during the launch of the Gobal Happiness Coalition at the World Government Summit in Dubai. With him are the six ministers representing the UAE, Costa Rica, Mexico, Portugal, Kazakhstan and Slovenia that formed the alliance. Image Credit: WAM

Dubai A Global Happiness Coalition was launched at the World Government Summit 2018 in the presence of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

The coalition is comprised of ministers from six countries: UAE, Costa Rica, Mexico, Portugal, Kazakhstan and Slovenia.

Also present at the launch was Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince.

On this occasion, Shaikh Mohammad said: “The world needs a new form of a coalition, one that works for the wellbeing and happiness of people. This coalition reflects a message in which the UAE meets the aspirations and hopes of people around the world who aspire for a better future. It is time for us as governments to agree on work mechanisms that realise the happiness of people and improve their quality of life.”

“From our own perspective, people’s happiness is a benchmark for the efficiency of government performance and a lynchpin to assess policies and programmes. People’s happiness is a common-factor for the work of public and private sector… this coalition is an opportunity to share knowledge, expertise and benefit from our experiences and present our vision on the importance of happiness as a noble purpose of government work,” said Shaikh Mohammad.

Shaikh Mohammad pointed out that investment in happiness is investment in security, peace and coexistence around the world. “Happiness is the opposite of hatred and extremism, and we are looking forward to the alliance bringing about a positive change in the world,” he said.

The coalition’s declaration states a number of goals, such as bolstering dialogue on happiness on a global scale, spreading knowledge and exchanging expertise on the implementation of wide-scale policies pertaining to happiness in member-countries. The alliance will also work on carrying out joint projects to support the efforts of these nations.

The coalition will hold annual meetings as part of the WGS’s activities to discuss developments and achievements, and share ideas that can help member-countries improve policies and programmes that can help achieve sustainable happiness in communities.

The agreement was signed by Ohoud Khalfan Al Roumi, Minister of State for Happiness and Quality of Life, Maria Manuel Leitao Marques, Portugal’s Minister of the Presidency and of Administrative Modernisation, Olga Marta Sanchez Oviedo, Costa Rica’s Minister of National Planning, Dauren Abayev, Kazakhstan’s Minister of Information and Communication, Alenka Smerkolj, Slovenia’s Minister of Development, Strategic Projects and Cohesion, and Francisco Guzman Ortiz, Head of the President’s Office in Mexico.

The coalition held its first meeting yesterday, discussing strategic goals and broad outlines of the alliance’s work programme. They also spoke about mechanisms for joint cooperation and coordination, while reaffirming their commitment to efficiently contribute to the enhancement of dialogue on happiness.