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Mohammed bin Rashid launches ‘Smart Buildability Index’

posted on 26/10/2016

Strong efforts in the field of smart solutions are required to accelerate the implementation of the goals of UAE Vision 2021, Vice President and Prime Minster and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has said.

He added that the best smart technologies should be implemented across all sectors, especially the construction industry.

Speaking during the launch of the ‘Smart Buildability Index', Sheikh Mohammed also highlighted the importance of standardisation in the construction industry across the UAE. "Such Indexes should be developed to ensure standards in the UAE are on par with the highest international benchmarks. Standardisation is a positive step that will enable major construction projects to better serve the citizens of the UAE, help them achieve happiness and promote further national progress and prosperity," he said.

He further noted the UAE will continue to pioneer the implementation of smart solutions and best practices to enhance its services and development sectors. "We aim not only to achieve new levels of success, but also to be at the forefront of any development trend and become a model for the world to follow," Sheikh Mohammed said, adding that he has great confidence in the ability of the UAE people to achieve any goal set by the country.

Sheikh Mohammed witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding by the Federal Demographic Council, federal ministries and the municipalities of the seven emirates, to commence the implementation of the new index across the UAE.

The signing ceremony was attended by H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince; H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai; H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Interior and Chairman of the Federal Demographic Council; H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs; H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Mohammed bin Rashid Foundation, and a number of ministers and senior officials.

Sheikh Saif bin Zayed stressed the importance of developing innovative solutions to meet future challenges and encouraged UAE citizens to drive the development of a competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy. He also noted the great strides made by the UAE to achieve the objectives of the national agenda, which are in line with the vision of the Vice President.

He further stressed that innovation will help achieve the targets of the post-oil economic programme set by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

The ‘Smart Buildability Index', an initiative of the Federal Demographic Council, aims to standardise building designs that adopt modern building techniques such as 3D printing and use locally manufactured steel structures, pre-fabricated pillars and walls. The Index seeks to promote the use of techniques and materials that accelerate construction processes, increase productivity and rationalise the use of unskilled labour.

The Index will be gradually introduced to construction projects of above 2000 square metres starting from early 2017. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Mohamed bin Zayed attends ADNOC Forum

posted on 26/10/2016

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, has said that the UAE, under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, is working firmly with determination and consistency in achieving the future national vision and aspirations of its people to further strengthen its leadership role in various fields.

His Highness said, "We live in a time where we are witnessing tremendous changes and challenges that deem it necessary to double our efforts and continue to work diligently to keep up with the pace of development and the furtherance of our competitiveness in the field of leadership and excellence."

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed made the announcement during his participation at the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, ADNOC, Forum, with the participation of more than 1,100 of its employees.

His Highness added, "In order to achieve our goals, there is no other alternative except looking ahead with confidence and optimism to the future, relying on the legacy of our fathers and grandfathers, their giving, dedication and sincerity."

Sheikh Mohamed asserted that ADNOC is a prestigious institution and has played an important role since its inception until today and is required to play a greater role in the future to be the best company in the world, expressing confidence that ADNOC will be able to evolve and adapt to keep pace with the rapid changes taking place in the energy sector.

His Highness said, "We are working for the future of our coming generations and for the establishment of a sophisticated infrastructure that allows them to live happily and in safety, security, peace and contentment."

The event was attended by senior management and a number of young employees, where they discussed the modernisation and development efforts taking place in ADNOC over the past eight months.

The event was attended by senior management and a number of young employees, where they discussed the modernisation and development efforts taking place in ADNOC over the past eight months.

Also speaking on the occasion, Dr. Sultan bin Ahmad Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State and CEO of the ADNOC Group, said, "The participation of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed in the forum is a great honour as this move reflects His Highness' interest, follow-up and support for ADNOC and the company's efforts to strengthen its standing among world-class energy companies, which encourages ADNOC to double its work and efforts to develop and improve efficiency."

The minister added that the group's efforts have focused in recent months on essential pillars, including the development and empowerment of human resources, improving performance, and the development of operational efficiency so as to achieve the strategic priorities of improving economic returns and enhancing the value of refining and petrochemical operations.

He explained that the work included efforts to provide more gas supplies, increase efficiency rates and increase profitability and continued investment in the development of capabilities and competencies of human resources with an on-going commitment to the safety of personnel, facilities and operations, as well as providing additional value to society.

He pointed out that efforts are now focused on the development of frameworks, policies and structures capable of achieving these goals, which in turn, he added, will achieve greater prosperity and growth for the nation. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


FNC participates in IPU women parliamentarians

posted on 26/10/2016

GENEVA: The Federal National Council, the legislative body of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is participating in the 24th session of the Forum of Women Parliamentarians, organised by the Inter-Parliamentary Union in Geneva from 23rd to 27th October.

In a speech at the forum, Federal National Council (FNC) member Afra Al Basti highlighted the UAE's efforts to protect women during wars and conflicts.

She also highlighted the active role of by H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union, Supreme President of the Family Development Foundation, and Head of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, in protecting women and promoting their rights.

At the forum, participants discussed the freedom of women to participate in political processes fully, safely and without interference, as well as efforts to build partnerships between men and women to achieve this objective. Another topic is ways of securing the rights and future of women and girls during war and conflict.

A panel discussion was held to discuss what parliamentary action can be taken to ensure that women and girls living under or fleeing from war and conflict can access health and education, and be protected from violence, harmful practices, trafficking and exploitation.

The delegation was headed by Dr. Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Speaker of Federal National Council (FNC). – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Hedayah, "Creative Minds For Social Good" initiative to counter terrorist propaganda

posted on 26/10/2016

Hedayah, the Abu Dhabi-based International Centre of Excellence for Countering Violent Extremism, has launched the "Creative Minds for Social Good", a new public-private initiative to increase the capacity of credible private voices in the Middle East and North Africa to create and disseminate compelling online content that counters terrorist propaganda and promotes positive alternatives in the region.

Hedayah is conducting this programme in collaboration with the U.S. Department of State and Facebook.

The programme will consist of a series of advanced-level workshops run by regional experts who will assist participants in developing concepts for online content. The first workshop took place in Dubai, United Arab Emirates from 24th-25th and include participants from throughout the Middle East and North Africa.

Experts from advertising, creative, digital and production companies, led by the Facebook Creative Shop Team, served as advisors to help refine the participants' concepts. Hedayah's experts provided the advice to further develop regionally specific messages to counter violent extremism. Representatives from the Sawab Centre, a bilateral US-UAE initiative to counter Daesh online propaganda, also provided recommendations on countering terrorist groups on social media.

The "Creative Minds for Social Good" programme will help forge a united front among government, industry and private citizenry against the online spread of terrorist ideologies by groups such as Daesh and Al-Qaeda. In the ongoing effort to silence extremists online, Hedayah remains committed to supporting regional, third party voices who share in this common objective.

Dr. Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, Chairman of Hedayah's Steering Board, expressed his support and appreciation to the U.S. Department of State and Facebook for supporting and convening this event. "This pioneering initiative recognises the growing vital role of communications particularly social media platforms," said Dr. Al Nuaimi.

Richard Stengel, the U.S. Under-Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, spoke to the assembled participants in Dubai and emphasised his government's commitment to supporting regional partners in countering extremist ideologies. "We know that Daesh and other terrorists are just a tiny minority who have had an outsized online presence. And, through this programme, we hope to harness the energies and amplify the voices of the overwhelming majority in the Middle East who reject these groups and their terrorist ideology. Together, we can drown out the extremists on social media," Under Secretary Stengel said.

In Hedayah's leading efforts to amplify online voices of tolerance and peace, it held the world's first Global CVE Communications Expo in Abu Dhabi in December 2014. This forum included 300 delegates representing government, industry, technology, academia, and civil society to collaborate and develop innovative communication strategies to counter terrorist propaganda. Hedayah also pioneers initiatives that support developing counter-narratives such as hosting a virtual Counter-Narrative Library, an online portal and database of existing, open-source counter-narratives.

"The role of social media is yet another key area that requires our collective commitment to CVE innovation and creativity in all aspects in order to create effective alternative messaging. All striving towards a shared objective and all with a part to play in creating cohesive and successful counter-narrative and alternative narrative campaigns," said Maqsoud Kruse, Executive Director of Hedayah. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE leads in Future Health Index

posted on 26/10/2016

The United Arab Emirates ranked 1st out of 13 countries surveyed by Future Health Index (FHI), receiving an overall score of 65.3 out of a possible 100, highlighting an increasing interest and growing confidence in technological solutions and connected care adoption.

Royal Philips, a leading health technology company, launched on Tuesday the results of the first edition of the FHI on the sidelines of the Dubai Investment Forum. The FHI, which is an extensive international 3rd party study that has been commissioned by Philips, explores how countries around the world are positioned to meet long-term global health challenges through integration and connected care technologies.

The Netherlands and China also coming in high, with scores of 58.9 and 58.1 respectively.

Arjen Radder, CEO of Philips Middle East and Turkey, said, "The Dubai Investment Forum is a strong platform that connects a wide range of investors with insights on existing, new and emerging investment opportunities across several key growth sectors. The launch of the FHI is the perfect example to shed light on a number of significant areas where healthcare systems must transform if they are going to succeed in delivering long-term value-based care.' ' It is encouraging to see the UAE is a global leader to adopting connected care and digital healthcare measures," he added.

Moreover, Fahad Al Gergawi, CEO of Dubai Investment Development Agency, said, "We are pleased to continue building on the existing partnership we have with Philips, which leverages the company's capabilities in driving a robust healthcare innovation and diagnostics approach. Public private partnerships are key to developing an integrated roadmap for investment and sustainable economic growth in all important industry practices."

Philips continues to build on its partnership with the Dubai Investment Development Agency through the MoU that was signed last year, which focuses on consulting, cooperating and exchanging information in areas of mutual interest that will further drive mutual strategic interests and objectives.

Examining the perceptions, behaviours and attitudes of patients and healthcare professionals, the FHI focuses on three important factors necessary to move toward a more integrated system of healthcare: access to healthcare; integration of the current health system; and adoption of connected health technology devices and systems.

The study, which runs annually, was conducted in partnership with an independent global market research firm in 13 countries in recent months. More than 2,600 healthcare professionals and 25,000 patients were questioned in Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, Japan, The Netherlands, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, UAE, U.K. and U.S.

While the data illustrates the growing opportunity for digital technology to drive healthcare transformation, the FHI also reveals varying levels of readiness across markets and unveils opportunities for improvement to encourage broader user adoption globally.

Three-quarters (76%) of healthcare professionals in developed markets agree their patients have access to the treatments needed for current and future medical conditions, versus just over half (58%) of those in emerging markets.

Overall, it is emerging markets such as the UAE that appear to be leading the way in terms of connected device adoption, and more practitioners in emerging economies expect connected devices to be used to manage health in the future.

In order to improve the quality, access and affordability of care, healthcare systems are transforming from a focus on hospital-based acute care to new models of integrated, coordinated care along the health continuum from healthy living and prevention to diagnosis, treatment and home care.

The FHI provides valuable insight for patients, healthcare professionals and policymakers – in both developed and emerging markets – on where attention needs to be focused to increase their respective levels of access, integration and adoption of health technology to improve healthcare outcomes and patient experience in the long term. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE-UN survey to provide accurate statistics for Arab Reading Index

posted on 26/10/2016

The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation (MBRF) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) have conducted a poll canvassing more than 50,000 people from all Arab countries to determine the status of reading in the region.

The survey seeks, in addition, to provide objective statistics for the Arab Reading Index, the results of which will be announced during the Knowledge Summit 2016. The Index is the first of its kind in the region; it is a scientific and standardised tool that tracks knowledge-focused initiatives in the Arab World and measures their impact on society, all in a bid to assign quantifiable numerical data to the process of cultural development in the region.

Jamal bin Huwaireb, Managing Director of MBRF, said: "The Arab Reading Index initiative resonates with the UAE's vision, which considers reading an essential element in the process of acquiring knowledge and strives to promote innovation as a principle in the local community, all in an effort to establish a well-educated generation capable of producing and spreading knowledge."

"The UAE is leading the pack when it comes to launching such initiatives, and this adheres to the intentions of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, who declared 2016 a ‘Year of Reading' and launched the National Reading Strategy," he noted, adding that the country has launched major projects and initiatives that fall under the umbrella of this strategy, most notable of which is the Arab Reading Challenge, launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. The Challenge saw more than one million Arab students pledge to collectively read 50 million books each academic year.

He added that Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid recently honoured 50,000 students who read 50 books each this academic year, as well as over 160,000 students from 828 schools who have collectively read five million books – and this is in the UAE alone.

Dr. Hani Al Turki, Chief Technical Advisors at the Arab Knowledge Project, said: "The Arab Reading Index aims to develop reliable methods to measure reading in Arab societies through producing accurate and current statistics. The Index will be created by building on the results of an online survey that has so far canvassed more than 50,000 individuals from all around the Arab World; the results will then be launched during the Knowledge Summit in December 2016."

"The Index determines the level of cultural development in the region –especially in Arab countries that lack specialised studies on the subject – and identifies the requirements needed for fostering a reading culture in the Arab World," he added. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE, UK ink MoU on work of members of diplomatic staff

posted on 26/10/2016

The governments of the UAE and UK have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on practice of work of members of families of diplomatic and consular missions.

Signed by Dr. Abdul Rahim Al Awadi, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation for Legal Affairs, and Philip Parham, British Ambassador to the UAE, it will allow members of families of diplomatic and consular missions accredited in both countries to work in the other country as per terms and measures stipulated by the MoU.

The MoU will regulate the work of these categories in the state, particularly when they enjoy diplomatic immunity. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


September passenger traffic tops seven million at DXB

posted on 26/10/2016

Seven million passengers per month is fast becoming the norm at Dubai International Airport(DXB) after September's numbers eclipsed that total for the sixth time in nine months, according to the monthly traffic report issued yesterday by operator Dubai Airports.

Passenger traffic at DXB passengers reached 7,094,738 compared to 6,432,654 recorded in the corresponding month last year, an increase of 10.3 per cent. Year to date, the world's leading international hub has welcomed 62,945,091 up 7.2 per cent from the 58,696,877 recorded during the first nine months of 2015.

Eastern Europe again was the fastest-growing market in September (+23.6 per cent) thanks to additional capacity and new services launched by a number of carriers including Emirates and flydubai, followed by GCC (16.6 per cent), Asia (16.2 per cent) and the Indian Subcontinent (12.2 per cent). India remained the top destination country (909,102 passengers), followed by the UK (522,046 passengers) and Saudi Arabia (503,977 passengers).

London was again the top destination city with 323,515 passengers followed by Doha (269,972 passengers) and Kuwait (231,457 passengers). Baku (+184.2 per cent) topped the list of cities in terms of percentage growth, followed by Boston (65.3 per cent), Calicut (63.5 per cent) and Taipei (55 per cent) due to increased capacity.

The average number of passengers per flight during the month was 213.

A total of 34,793 flights operated at DXB during the month under review compared to 34,146 movements recorded in September last year, marginally up by under 1.9 per cent. Year to date the number of flights totalled 312,169 a minor increase of 3.2 per cent compared to 302,399, recorded during the same period in 2015.

September freight volumes totalled 205,142 tonnes, down 1 per cent from the 207,315 recorded in September last year. Year to date cargo reached 1,891,419 tonnes, up 2 per cent compared to 1,853,130 tonnes recorded during the first eight months last year.

Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports, said, "Seven million passengers per month is clearly the new normal at DXB. While this is welcome news, we are even more pleased with our ability to enhance the passenger experience by using technology and process improvements to increase the flow rate through the airport. Our DXB Plus programme is designed to improve that even further as we work towards not only operating the world's busiest airports but also the world's best." – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE wins two gold medals in Taiwan's stamp championship

posted on 26/10/2016

TAIPEI: The UAE has won two gold medals in the Philataipei 2016 World Stamp Championship Exhibition held from 21 to 26 October 2016 in Taiwan. The Emirates Philatelic Association (EPA) along with exhibitors from 83 countries participated in the show.

EPA participants in exhibition won a number of laurels for their entries. Mohammed Ahmad Al Murr won gold medal for "The Cancellation and Postal History of Muscat 1830-1948. Ahmad bin Eisa Al Serkal won gold medal for "Postal History Study of Airmail from Iraq 1919-1945".

Al Serkal also won Large Vermeil for "Abu Dhabi Stamp 1963-1973. Thomas Johansen won Large Vermeil medal for "Postal Development in the Gulf during the British Postal Administration". Mr. Nasser bin Ahmad Al Serkal won Large Silver medal for his collection of "Sharjah Postal History". Omer Farook, Roshan Prasad, Majid Jaber Ali and Mutaz Osman won Silver medals for their exhibits.

In youth class Eisa bin Ahmad Al Serkal won Vermeil medal, Rana Farook won silver bronze medal, Disha Bobby and Nikita Asnani won bronze medals for their exhibits.

Abdulla Khoory was a jury member and Omar Mohammed Ahmad was National Commissioner with Muhammad Javaid and Ali Abdulrahman as Assistant commissioners from United Arab Emirates.

These achievements have enhanced the UAE's prestige in the world of philately. It is a great honour for the country to achieve these successes, said EPA in a press release. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Ajman Crown Prince donates personal collection to Etihad Museum

posted on 26/10/2016

H.H. Sheikh Ammar bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, Crown Prince of Ajman, has contributed to ‘Let's Preserve the Legacy' campaign by donating the personal dagger, passport, official seal, pocket watch, and eyeglasses of the late Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, Ruler of Ajman and Member of Federal Supreme Council of the United Arab Emirates at the time, and one of the signatories on the union agreement on 2nd December, 1971.

The contribution by H.H. Sheikh Ammar bin Humaid Al Nuaimi comes in response to the invitation to support the ‘Lets Preserve the Legacy' initiative by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, inviting the community to donate items to establish and build the collections of the Etihad Museum.

Sheikh Ammar's contribution was driven by his strong believe in the leading role that Etihad Museum will play in preserving the nation's history and that the museum will represent a historical and national icon containing documents, pictures, and artefacts from private collections that will benefit the young Emirati generations in their academic, practical and social lives.

Sheikh Ammar praised the attention that the leadership of the UAE is providing to the heritage sector through Etihad Museum, which reflects a true representation of the historical establishment of the UAE Union. This museum will serve to further empower current and future Emirati generations, contributing towards their collective pride and cultural identity, and inspiring them to follow in the footprints of the union's founding fathers.

"Since the UAE's inception it has been led by honest men who have stayed true to their words and carried the torch of the union forward, including the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who first ignited the flame of the union in the company of the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum. Successfully following in the same path today is His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of the United Arab Emirates," he said.

Sheikh Ammar also praised His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum's initiative to launch the ‘Let's Preserve the Legacy' campaign to support the Etihad Museum's collections. Sheikh Ammar encouraged the public to become involved in this vitally important campaign, as it is a true honour for each citizen to contribute towards this national landmark that bears the name, symbol and meaning of the UAE Union. HH described how the UAE public should take pride in this museum, from the first dream of becoming one nation to its current status as an exemplary progressive state that maintains a pioneering role in human and social development, and enjoys political stability and security.

"The creation of the Etihad Museum is a great celebration of the UAE and recognises the great iconic personalities who played a great role in the country's history, as the museum will document the events and developments of that time," Sheikh Ammar added.

HH continued, "Our support for the creation of this national landmark stems from our belief in the leading role that the museum will play in documenting the history of the UAE, which reflects the level of development, progress and sophistication that the country has reached today. Museums play an important role in maintaining national culture, and developing and encouraging Emirati culture amongst the public is a national responsibility." - TFAHAM He emphasised the importance of documenting events that lead to the Union, as the UAE is considered to be a modern Arab world success story, and the subject of a great many academic studies as well as a shining example to follow in the East and in the West.

"The Union has a special meaning for each and every UAE citizen, as it empowers them with feelings of pride and dignity. The date of the Union's signing marks a pivotal change in the lives of Emiratis, as it represents the foresight, honesty and patience of the Union's Founding Fathers, who laid the foundations to a modern state, from which we have collectively built upwards to the upper echelons of progress and development," he further added.

"Under the Union's umbrella, the values of cooperation and collaboration have been leveraged amongst the loyal people of the UAE, who were together able, under the directions of our wise leadership, to establish a stable Union that has stood strong in the face of all challenges. This state, which has gathered and united the thoughts and the efforts of its people, was all made possible due to the coming together of the UAE's rulers, who sought to establish a landmark for humanity. Furthermore, they created key pillars which have built towards catering to the fundamental needs of their people including culture, healthcare, society, education, sports and security. Through its great achievements, the Union has kept our nation resilient, secure and stable," he said.

Through a unique visitor journey, Etihad Museum presents experience-driven exhibitions, interactive programmes and education initiatives that explore the chronology of events that culminated in the formation of the Union of the Emirates in 1971, with a key emphasis on the period between 1968 and 1974. Through interactive exhibits and learning programmes, the museum tells the story of the Union's creation from the perspective of the country's leaders. The experience also aims to educate visitors about the nation's constitution, in particular the rights, privileges and responsibilities that it bestows upon the people of the UAE. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Emirati, Saudi youth hail role of social networking media

posted on 26/10/2016

Emirates Youth Council has held a youth panel discussion in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, themed: "Participation in Creating Positive Impact," during which distinguished youth experiences in using the social networking media in spreading positive ideas in community were reviewed.

This came during participation of the UAE delegation, led by Shamma bint Sohail Faris AlMazrui, Minister of State for Youth Affairs, at the Digital Visual Media Forum (Shoof 4), organised recently by The Prince Mohammed bin Salman Foundation (MISK), in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

AlMazrui said the social networking media use effective tools to form public opinion, especially among the youth, who spread the noble human values. She noted that those involved effectively in using the social networking media should inspire the youth to upgrade their cultural and intellectual capacities to score more achievements.

The Emirati youth and their Saudi counterparts reviewed their experiences and how best to harness them to spread innovative ideas, exchange experiences and making use of this interactive communicative forum for launching youth projects. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Construction of AED1 billion Gate Avenue at DIFC set to begin

posted on 26/10/2016

Construction will shortly begin on the much anticipated Gate Avenue at DIFC, the new urban premium lifestyle, cultural and entertainment development at the heart of Dubai International Financial Centre that promises to change the face of urban space and living in Dubai.

Habtoor Leighton Group (HLG); a leading specialist contractor in the region was awarded the AED 500 million contract, meaning construction and land preparation can get underway for one of the biggest property projects in Dubai. Gate Avenue at DIFC also represents DIFC's largest current project, which is already attracting wide interest from the business and retail communities.

Gate Avenue at DIFC is already worth AED 450 million approximately with the existing truck tunnel and master plan infrastructure in place. Combined with the new contract, this will elevate the full development cost to an estimated AED 1 billion, reflecting the size, scope and ambition of this major project.

Set for the first phase of completion by the end of 2017, Gate Avenue at DIFC will heighten connectivity of the entire district. A series of spacious, aesthetically appealing, indoor and outdoor themed areas and walkways will link the podium levels of all buildings located in the DIFC. This will create both a new urban living concept for the region built around having a unique experience when visiting DIFC, as well as delivering a more integrated professional, connected and accessible environment.

With over 200 dining, boutique, retail and entertainment options, as well as an iconic new mosque, Gate Avenue at DIFC will span across 660,000 square feet and 880m in total length. Building on the already world class business infrastructure and offerings available in DIFC, it takes the Centre's offerings to the next level as a mixed-use development.

Gate Avenue at DIFC is set to become a leading dining and retail destination as well as acting as a the beating heart for the DIFC community of professionals, residents and visitors, increasing the attractiveness of the Centre in a highly competitive global market.

Speaking on the announcement, Nabil Alkindi, Executive Vice President of Property Development, commented, "Gate Avenue at DIFC is a highly ambitious project that is seeing the Centre develop from a leading financial hub into a prominent lifestyle destination by changing the face of urban development in the region."

Bringing Habtoor Leighton Group on board as our primary construction partner, moves the project into its active development phase and we are excited to see the project physically take shape in the coming months. Gate Avenue at DIFC will connect our vibrant and dynamic community of over 21,000 professionals, as well as residents and visitors, in one central location, he added. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -