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UK-UAE Task Force holds 16th meeting in Abu Dhabi

posted on 23/02/2017

The UK-UAE Task Force yesterday held its 16th meeting in Abu Dhabi to discuss a range of issues of common interest, including conflict resolution, security, trade, investment, humanitarian action, education, culture and consular affairs.

The Task Force issued the following statement: "16th UK-UAE Task Force.

Abu Dhabi, 22nd February, 2017.

Resolving Conflict We are working together for a secure and prosperous region, including political solutions in Yemen and Syria.

Security We are deepening cooperation to defeat Daesh, counter extremism, and tackle illicit financial flows.

Trade and Investment We are helping our businesses to increase Our bilateral trade and encouraging new UK-UAE partnerships such as the recent ADNOC-BP agreement.

We are looking forward to UK participation in Expo2020.

Humanitarian Action We are deepening collaboration following the announcement of the UAE's new aid strategy, including our responses to the humanitarian crises in Yemen, Syria and Somalia.

Consular We are continuing our collaboration to provide benefits to our citizens in each other's country.

Culture and Education We welcome the launch of the UK-UAE 2017 Year of Creative Collaboration and are looking forward to the exciting programme of events:"


VP tasks Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre to lead Mars 2117 project

posted on 23/02/2017

Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, issued directives to Mohammad Bin Rashid Space Centre, MBRSC, to lead the Mars 2117 project and prepare a 100-year plan for its implementation.

As per his directives, the centre's plan will focus on preparing specialised national cadres and developing their capabilities in the fields of space science, research, artificial intelligence, robotics and advanced space technologies.

The centre will also put in place a detailed plan for the next five years that will deal with all technological, logistical and technical aspects of the project. This five-year plan will be carried out alongside a media plan that will keep pace with the project's implementation programme. The media plan will ensure coverage at local, regional and international levels, taking into consideration how well the project was received when it was announced during the World Government Summit 2017.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid also instructed MBRSC to introduce a scientific, research and behavioural programme to instil a passion for knowledge in the new generation of students in Emirati schools and universities, in addition to focussing on research programmes that will positively impact high-priority technology sectors, which in turn can benefit the UAE's march towards development.

He also emphasised the importance of inspiring new generations in order to take their ambition to new heights, expand their knowledge and motivate their scientific curiosity, which will serve the UAE's future plans and will leave an imprint on human knowledge.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed pointed out that sky and space are the limit for the new generations to meet their aspirations.

The Mars 2117 project includes putting in place a programme to prepare Emiratis for Mars and space exploration. The project aims to build the first city on Mars in 100 years, which will be achieved through various scientific alliances. The project will be associated with research themes involved in the exploration of faster transportation systems to Mars, as well as building houses and producing energy and food. It will also try to find faster transportation methods for travelling to and from Mars.


Abu Dhabi Crown Prince praises national defence industry's progress as he tours IDEX 2017

posted on 23/02/2017

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, yesterday praised the national defence industry for making significant progress and becoming a significant source of support for the UAE Armed Forces.

He made the remark during a tour to 13th International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX 2017) where he visited the stands of a number of national, Arab and foreign defence companies.

"The national defence manufacturing industry was built on the solid foundations laid by the nation's founder, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who had established a national military establishment that could carry out all the missions of defending the country. This is being realised today under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan towards a purely Emirati military equipment manufacturing industry using Emirati expertise and manpower," H.H. the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi said.

This, H.H. noted, is another proof that the efforts, being made and the resources being used to advance the military industry, are bearing fruit, serving the interests of the country and achieving the short and long-term goals.

"The UAE is committed to developing defence manufacturing through providing all required and necessary resources and support and investing in military research and co-operation with strategic partners, all within the context of a comprehensive plan to develop the national manufacturing sector in the UAE, on the one hand, and strengthen the UAE's stature as a regional and international power that can defend its territory and interests and, at the same time, while honouring its commitments to enhance regional and international peace and security," said H.H Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

During his tour, H.H. Sheikh Mohamed visited the stand of Ozti, a leading Turkish manufacturer of field kitchens and bakeries that take only two people and 45 minutes to go up and running to produce 750 loaves of bread and 500 meals every hour.

His tour included the stands of Darwish bin Ahmed and Sons Group, a national provider of civil and military cranes and transportation and shipping equipment, and Ahmed Al Mazrouei Innovation Centre, a provider and developer of four-wheel drive vehicles and personnel carriers.

He then learned about the specifications of Archangel, a long-range multi-purpose aircraft manufactured by IOMAX USA for maritime surveillance, command and control mission, border control and fire-fighting missions.

He visited the stands of Ukroboronprom (UOP), a Ukrainian conglomerate of more than 100 defence companies; UAE-based Trust International Group, a developer of technology security, upgrades of military equipment and weapon systems, spare parts.

H.H. Sheikh Mohamed then visited the stands of ISOTREX Manufacturing, which produces all-terrain armoured vehicles, the China Electronics Technology Group Corporation (CETC), Emirati technology solutions provider Atlas Communications, and Handasa, an Abu Dhabi-based provider of sustainable and renewable energy solutions.

H.H. Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed also visited the Bosnian pavilion, and the Jordanian pavilion where he met Jordan's Prince Faisal Bin Al Hussein and learned about defence equipment manufactured by the KADDB Investment Group.

He also visited the stand of the US defence company Raytheon, a provider of defence, civil government and cybersecurity solutions, and the stand of DarkMatter, a UAE-based cyber security company, and Lockheed Martin, a US-based global aerospace, defence, security and advanced technologies company.

H.H. Sheikh Mohamed was accompanied during the tour by Mohammed Mubarak Al Mazrouei, Under-Secretary at the Court of Abu Dhabi Crown Prince; Lt. General Hamad Mohammed Thani Al Rumaithi, Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces; Major General Lt. General Juma Ahmed Al Bowardi Al Falasi, Adviser to Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Force; Staff Major General Pilot Faris Khalaf Khalfan Al Mazrouei, Chairman of Critical Infrastructure and Coastal Protection Authority and chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of IDEX 2017.


Abdullah bin Zayed visits Rosenborg Castle in Denmark

posted on 23/02/2017

COPEHAGEN: H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, visited Rosenborg Castle in Denmark on Wednesday as part of his official visit to the country.

Upon his arrival at the castle, the UAE Foreign Minister was received by Manager of Rosenborg Castle Museum.

While touring the castle, Sheikh Abdullah was briefed on the castle, one of the key landmarks featuring Denmark's history. It also depicts the era of King Christian IV, who founded the stock market and the city of Copenhagen.

The castle's museum houses the ornaments and jewels of the royal family. It also showcases several drawings and paintings.

At the conclusion of the tour, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed expressed his happiness over his visit to the historic landmark, which reflects the culture and history of Denmark.

The UAE Foreign Minister was accompanied during the tour by Fatima Khamis Salem Khalfan Al Mazrouei, the UAE Ambassador to the Kingdom of Denmark.


UAE spares no efforts to protect and provide dignified life to children: Minister

posted on 23/02/2017

PARIS: The United Arab Emirates (UAE) spares no efforts to protect and provide dignified life to children, said Dr. Maytha bint Salem Al Shamsi, UAE Minister of State, and noted that President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan had issued the UAE's new Child Protection Law No. 3 - popularly known as the Wadeema Law - that came into effect in June 2016.

Al Shamsi made the remarks in a speech delivered at the Paris International Ministerial Conference on the Protection of Children in Armed Conflicts, held on Tuesday by France and the United Nations International Children's Fund (UNICEF) on Monday, the 10th anniversary of the Paris Commitments to end the use of children in conflict.

According to the United Nations, about 250 million children across the world are affected by conflicts, Al Shamsi noted, while stressing the UAE's commitment to protecting children, added Al Shamsi, who led the UAE delegation that included senior officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

Wadeema law seeks to protect children from negligence, abandonment and sexual abuse, she said.

"Due to economic, social and security pressures, thousands of children end up carrying arms and participate in fighting. They are being used to back rebel and armed groups, to carry supplies and ammunition and even injured soldiers, gather military intelligence and conduct reconnaissance missions, cook and sometimes they are sexually abused or used as human shields," the UAE Minister said and noted that recently more children were used to carry out suicide attacks.

The UN member states should change their policies to protect children from being recruited in war, she said.

"In the 21st century, this fragile social segment cannot survive without minimum protection from such acts," Minister Al Shamsi added.

Paris International Ministerial Conference on the Protection of Children in Armed Conflicts was held to look at ways of continuing mobilisation of international efforts to protect children during conflicts.

This included a call for the unconditional release of all children, without exception, and putting an end to child recruitment, while increasing resources to help reintegrate and educate children who have been released, and taking urgent action to protect internally displaced children, child refugees and migrants.

French President Francois Hollande also gave a speech at the conference and noted that his country offered about ?100 million in 2015 and 2016 to support these efforts.


UAE signs UN Ministerial Resolution on sustainable inland transport and mobility

posted on 23/02/2017

GENEVA: The UAE signed the Ministerial Resolution on the 70th anniversary of the Inland Transport Committee (ITC) of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, UNECE, operating under the motto "Embracing the new era for sustainable inland transport and mobility."

The UAE signed the document during its participation in the Ministerial Meeting of the ITC, held yesterday at Emirates Hall at UN European Headquarters in Geneva.

Ambassador Obaid Salem Al Zaabi, Permanent Representative of the UAE to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Geneva, led the country's delegation at the meeting.

At the end of the meeting, Al Zaabi, on behalf of Dr Abdullah bin Mohammed Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Minister of Infrastructure Development and Chairman of the Federal Transport Authority - Land and Maritime, signed the Ministerial Resolution.

The Resolution addresses the challenges of sustainable development of mobility and inland transport, especially in the context of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, by supporting intergovernmental transport and transport-related multi-disciplinary co-operation within the platform of the ITC, and by placing due emphasis on the importance of mobilising resources and aligning financial flows with sustainable development objectives.

The UNECE was set up in 1947 by the United Nations Economic and Social Council, ECOSOC. It is one of the five regional commissions of the United Nations.

The ITC helps maintain agreements, which allow trade goods to cross borders more efficiently, enabling economies of different countries to become interlinked and grow together. It also develops tools to assist governments in developing environmentally-friendly transport policies, ensuring cleaner air, healthier citizens and more sustainable transport systems.


IDEX is an important platform to exchange knowledge, promote Arab strength: Sudanese President

posted on 23/02/2017

Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Beshir has said the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) 2017 is based on advanced ideas as a first-grade investment and tourism project, seen as an excellent forum for visitors to exchange knowledge and experience.

He added that the Arab region would benefit from the successful integration of its military industries, and noted that the region faces various threats, which should be met with proper military preparations using the latest technological developments.

In his interview with Arab local daily, Al-Ittihad newspaper, published on Wednesday, President al-Beshir highlighted the similarities in the political views of the UAE and Sudan, and referred to the strength of bilateral relations between both countries in the political and economic fields.

He also expressed his admiration about the UAE's current development, led by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The Sudanese President expressed his aspirations to further strengthen bilateral relations between both countries and to co-operate in overcoming several issues, including current crises in Yemen, Syria, Iraq and Libya.

During his meeting with His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, President al-Beshir said all their past encounters have been positive and were aimed at achieving the best for both countries, as well as for Arab and Islamic peoples. The ties between both countries are also historic, and were established by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and former the late Sudanese President Jaafar Mohammed Numeiri, he added.

Al Beshir recalled his opportunity to serve in the UAE Armed Forces more than 40 years ago, during the era of its nation-building, as well as the strong relations between both countries since that period.

He described the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan as a wise Arab leader, citing his clear vision on regional and international issues.

President al-Beshir also said that the main issues that would be discussed by Arab leaders in the upcoming summit, include the Palestinian issue after the election of the new US President, as well as the turmoil in Syria, Yemen, Libya and Iraq, and the urgent need to fight terrorism. He also referred to relations with Iran and the need to contain the Iranian expansion in the region.


IDEX 2017 Day 4: UAE Armed Forces signs deals worth over AED 3.4 billion

posted on 23/02/2017

Staff Brigadier-General Rashid Mohammed Al Shamsi, Official Spokesperson of IDEX 2017, announced 20 new deals worth over AED 3.4 billion at a press conference on day four of the 13th edition of the International Defence Exhibition and Conference, IDEX 2017.

The national companies were awarded 13 deals, while the remaining seven deals went to international companies. The press conference, held at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, was attended by Naval Staff Colonel Fahed Nasser Al Thehli, Official Spokesperson of the fourth edition of the Naval Defence Exhibition, NAVDEX 2017.

Staff Brigadier-General Rashid Mohammed Al Shamsi announced the following contracts signed by the UAE Armed Forces: A contract worth AED 46. 9 million was won by the UAE based company, International Golden Group, IGG, to develop infrastructure for IT projects. A contract worth over AED 6.8 million was awarded to the Swiss company, Rheinmentall Air Defence, to offer the UAE Air Force with technical support. While a contract worth AED 27 million was won by UAE based company E-Marine to extend naval cables.

A contract valued at over AED 409.2 million was won by the UAE based company, Caracal International to purchase weaponry. Condor Medical Waste Treatment Company a UAE-based company was awarded a contract worth about AED 2.4 million to provide technical and medical support for the transport and processing of medical waste.

The UAE based company, Ahmed Al Mazrouei Metal Industries was awarded AED20 million contract to produce and install storage for weapons and maintenance of moving targets at shooting ranges and equipment. Meanwhile, the UAE based company, Al Futtaim Motors also won a contract valued at AED20 million to provide technical support.

The UAE based company, Royal Jet was awarded a contract worth AED60 million to provide private air transport for VIPs.

The UAE based Emirates Motor Company for the maintenance, repair and overhaul of Mercedes-Benz vehicles won a contract valued at AED30 million.

The UAE based Burkan Munitions Systems won a contract valued at over AED 36. 3 million to purchase ammunitions for the UAE Air Force and UAE Air Defence Force The UAE based company Emirates Defence Technology, EDT, was awarded a contract valued at over AED59.1 million to buy and ammunitions for land forces. Meanwhile, the UAE based company TRUST won a contract worth AED 300 million to supply and buy machinery.

The UAE based company Star Satellite Communications Company was awarded a contract valued at about AED745.2 million, to buy satellite communications terminals.

The UAE based company, Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments Company, ADASI, won a contract valued at AED 140.3 million to supply thermal imaging cameras and ground control stations.

The French company Thales Communications & Security won a contract worth about AED 26.7 million to provide spareparts for telecommunication systems.

Meanwhile, French company Dassault Aviation was awarded worth AED51million to provide technical support for aircrafts of the UAE Air Force and UAE Air Defence Force. The French company Thales Communications & Security won a contract valued at about AED 38.6 million to purchase and install air communication system stations.

The Italian company AgustaWestland Aviation Services, was awarded a contract worth over AED 8.9 million to modernise the interior cabin of VIPs' aircrafts. The American company Raytheon won a contract valued at about AED1.3 billion to buy ammunitions for the UAE Air Force and UAE Air Defence Force.

The UAE based company Star Satellite Communications Company was awarded a contract valued at about AED745.2 million, to buy satellite communications terminals.

The American company Satellite Imaging Technologies Gmbh was awarded a contract valued at AED 96.9 million to rent imaging satellites.

Over the past four days, during IDEX and NAVDEX 2017, the UAE Armed Forces penned a cumulative of 82 deals worth more than AED 18.833 billion. The past three days are split as follows: Day one of IDEX and NAVDEX 2017 witnessed 21 deals worth more than AED 4.416 billion, Day two of IDEX and NAVDEX 2017 witnessed 10 new deals worth more than AED 6.919 billion, Day three of IDEX and NAVDEX 2017 witnessed 31 new deals worth more than AED 4.075 billion.


Abu Dhabi Ship Building, Raytheon mark a decade of partnership

posted on 23/02/2017

Abu Dhabi Ship Building (ADSB) and Raytheon have celebrated the 10th anniversary of their partnership in a ceremony alongside the UAE Navy Baynunah corvette Al Hili on the NAVDEX waterfront.

"We have established an excellent working relationship with Raytheon over the last 10 years and look forward to continuing our partnership in the years ahead," said Dr Khaled Al Mazrouei, chief executive of ADSB, at the presentation event.

ADSB is the prime contractor for the six-ship Baynunah corvette programme.

Al Hili, the final vessel of the class, was formally commissioned at the NAVDEX show on 20 February.

Raytheon Missile Systems has provided the self-defence weapon fit for the Baynunah class vessels.

Raytheon in December 2006 concluded a Direct Commercial Sale (DCS) with ADSB, valued at more than $80 million, for seven Mk 49 Mod 3 guided launcher systems. This marked the start of the partnership between the two companies.

The new Arialah class offshore patrol vessels being delivered by ADSB are also being equipped with Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM).. In this case, each ship features an 11-round Mk 49 Mod 2 launcher.

The UAE recently concluded a DCS contract with Raytheon to buy the latest Block 2 version of RAM.

The evolved Block 2 missile has a larger rocket motor, a new control actuation system and an enhanced RF receiver.


Abu Dhabi Ship Building, Lockheed Martin sign MoU to cooperate for support services for UAE Military Maritime Assets

posted on 23/02/2017

Abu Dhabi Ship Building Company, ADSB, and Lockheed Martin yesterday announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, to cooperate in providing support services for UAE Military maritime assets.

The MoU was signed by Dr. Khaled Al Mazrouei, CEO of Abu Dhabi Ship Building, and Joe North, Vice President of Littoral Ship and Systems at Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems, on the sidelines of NAVDEX.

The agreement brings together both parties to offer maintenance, repair and overhaul services.

"This MoU brings together Lockheed Martin's and ADSB's significant experience and expertise for the defence and commercial maritime market," North said. "The agreement creates excellent synergy for offering maritime support solutions to advance the UAE Navy in the areas of hull and combat systems maintenance, modernisation, and training requirements"

"The MoU between ADSB and Lockheed Martin looks to strengthen the service offering our two companies can provide to the UAE Navy. ADSB is uniquely positioned as the only shipyard in the GCC that can build, refit, repair and upgrade complex naval vessels," Dr. Al Mazrouei said. "By collaborating with Lockheed Martin, we will be able to expand our current commitment to the UAE military."


Milrem intends to bring production unit in UAE

posted on 23/02/2017

Milrem, an Estonian military technology solutions provider, has expressed its intention to build a production unit to develop and arm unmanned ground vehicles, UGV, in the UAE.

"We, as a company believe in cooperation, and if the UAE Armed Forces start using these vehicles, we will produce these systems in the UAE," Kuldar Vaarsi, Chairman of the Board of Milrem, said. "We are not keen to do production in Estonia, but with local partners, our intention is to bring the production here in the UAE, depending on the volumes of the sales of this vehicle."

In an exclusive interview with WAM at IDEX 2017, Vaarsi said that the UAE Armed Forces have a very good understanding of how to use the vehicle, and the company is concentrating on cooperation on how to adapt to using robotic or unmanned units. "This is where we see the cooperation, and at the government-to-government level there can be very good collaborations between Estonia and the UAE."

The International Golden Group, IGG, announced on Tuesday its intensions to cooperate with Milrem to develop and arm unmanned ground vehicles, along with ASELSAN, the largest Turkish defence electronics company. The prototype of this product has been on display at IDEX 2017 under the umbrella of IGG.

Mr. Vaarsi said that is the first time the company has introduced this weaponised system. "We have two other systems this year at IDEX, one is on the Saudi stand with simple cargo transportation and other at the Estonian National Pavilion."

He said that a Letter of Intent, LOI, has been signed with the IGG group as a first step towards long term collaboration. "We will be testing this system with the UAE Armed Forces, and will analyse how these kinds of systems can be used to enhance the capability of armed forces."

Answering a question about testing the vehicle, he said, "We have carried out tests for the vehicle, including live firing with ASELSAN. We have carried out different testing in both sand and ice, and the Estonian Armed Forces have used this system during exercises. The US Army is due to start testing soon."

Regarding technical issues with the system, Vaarsi said that temperatures will be a challenge, however, the company has a very strong engineering team who have already prepared programmes on how to solve potential issues concerning the temperatures, especially in the Middle East. He said that it is very reliable and robust vehicle, because it is especially designed to be a military vehicle."

Vaarsi concluded by saying that the Middle East is the ideal market for these kinds of system, referring to IDEX 2017 as "an excellent show with very high interest in unmanned systems."

Milrem's two main lines of business cover the research and development of unmanned vehicles, and the repair and maintenance of heavy-duty military vehicles. Milrem is a member of the Estonian Defence Industry Association.


IDEX: International Golden Group announces 6 defence contracts and agreements

posted on 23/02/2017

The International Golden Group, IGG, the Abu Dhabi-based supplier of high-end defence and security systems, yesterday announced six agreements for joint cooperation in the supply of defence systems with global companies Thales Optronique, Fraser Optics, Comtech, CZECHOSLOVAK GROUP, Digital Bit and Denel Vehicle Systems at the 13th International Defence Exhibition, IDEX 2017, being held in Abu Dhabi.

IGG is one of the primary Emirati organisations that operates in the defence and security sector in the UAE, GCC and all around the world.

Specialising in providing high-end defence and security solutions, IGG is a partner of the UAE's Armed Forces, Ministry of the Interior and other national security authorities and has been providing specialised defence and security solutions and its expertise in systems integration and military product development for more than 15 years. IGG offers a wide range of tactical solutions to weapons and communications equipment and soldiers.

The second agreement signed by IGG with the French company Thales Optronique provides for supplying the latest binocular products that calculate and determine long-term positions. The binoculars are very light and small, making them convenient for users to store easily.

IGG has also signed an exclusive agreement with Fraser Optics to distribute defence products in the UAE and the Gulf region. The company will provide its expertise in designing and developing endoscopes and fixed optics as well as sensors used for national defence and homeland security.

IGG struck a deal with Comtech, based in China, one of the largest suppliers of hardware and software solutions.

IGG has also signed an exclusive contract with defence and civil industrial company DMD-CZECHOSLOVAK GROUP, to distribute defence products in the UAE and the Gulf region. The company specialises in designing and developing modern land-based weapons, specialised military vehicles and ammunition, and logistics and machinery products for the automotive and aerospace industry.

IGG also partnered with Denel Vehicle Systems, a South African company dedicated to manufacturing and carrying out maintenance on vehicles and military vehicles.


UAE Navy awards Marte anti-ship missile contract to MBDA

posted on 23/02/2017

MBDA, a world leader in missile systems, has been awarded a contract by the UAE Navy to supply additional Marte MK2/N anti-ship missiles, the company announced last night at the International Defence Exhibition, IDEX 2017.

This is a follow on from an initial contract signed in February 2009 for the supply of Marte missiles. Available with a variety of launcher configurations, Marte MK 2/N are able to strike targets at ranges in excess of 30 km, flying a fire-and-forget sea-skimming profile using mid-course inertial guidance and active radar homing, said MBDA, which is owned jointly by Airbus Group, BAE Systems and Leonardo.

"MBDA is one of the country's leading defence suppliers and will continue to show our long-standing commitment and support for the UAE Armed Forces", said Antoine Bouvier, CEO of MBDA, in a press statement.

"This new contract reaffirms MBDA pre-eminence in the anti-ship sector and is clear proof of the technology leadership of the Marte missile family that, over the years, has continued to be competitive and able to respond to increasing customer requirements, thanks to its modular design," said Pasquale Di Bartolomeo, MBDA's Executive Group Director Strategy and Managing Director of MBDA Italia.

With a significant presence in five European countries and the USA, in 2015, MBDA achieved a turnover of 2.9 billion Euros with an order book of 15.1 billion Euros.

With more than 90 armed forces customers in the world, MBDA is the only European group capable of designing and producing missiles and missile systems that correspond to the full range of current and future operational needs of the three armed forces of land, sea and air.

In total, the group offers a range of 45 missile systems and countermeasure products already in operational service and more than 15 others are currently in development.


ADNEC, ADASI sign strategic partnership agreement

posted on 23/02/2017

Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) signed on Wednesday a partnership agreement with Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments (ADASI), the region's first reliable one-stop solutions provider within the autonomous systems industry.

The agreement mandates the participation of ADASI as a strategic partner in the 2018 editions of the Unmanned Systems Exhibition and Conference (UMEX) and Simulation Exhibition and Conference (SimTEX), set to run at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre from 25 to 27 February, 2018.

The partnership agreement was signed on the sidelines of the 13th edition of International Defence Exhibition & Conference (IDEX 2017) between Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Group CEO of ADNEC and Ali Al Yafei, CEO of ADASI. Her Excellency Noura Mohammed Hilal Al Kaabi, the UAE Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs and Chairwoman of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) and Homaid Al Shemmari, Chairman of ADASI, also attended the ceremony.

Noura Mohammed Hilal Al Kaabi, the UAE Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs and Chairwoman of ADNEC, said: "ADNEC is keen to build strategic partnerships with leading national companies to ensure the success of these landmark exhibitions. The agreement signed with ADASI today supports our ongoing efforts to attract major local and international players in the unmanned systems sector to participate in UMEX 2018 and SimTEX 2018. We are confident such synergies will further enhance Abu Dhabi's leading status as the venue of choice for hosting specialised international events of the calibre of IDEX and UMEX."

Homaid Al Shemmari, Chairman of ADASI, said, "Our partnership agreement with ADNEC articulates our commitment to supporting specialised events that promote the UAE's defence industry – especially the unmanned systems sector. Our participation in UMEX will enable us to showcase the latest technologies and innovations in the unmanned systems sector and help us build partnerships and explore new business opportunities. We are confident that events such as UMEX will significantly enhance the competitiveness of our defence industry and help boost ADASI's capabilities in the unmanned systems sector."

Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Group CEO of ADNEC, said: "We are delighted to enter this partnership agreement with one of the leading specialised, next generation technology companies in the defence industry. Such partnerships drive our efforts to achieve further growth in the number of international and local companies participating in the 2018 edition of UMEX and SimTEX".

Al Dhaheri added, "UMEX and SimTEX offer a unique platform to bring together the world's prominent players in the unmanned systems sector under one roof to demonstrate their prowess in this niche industry. These technologies play a crucial role in ensuring the stability and prosperity of nations through acting as a catalyst for further development."

Ali Al Yafei, CEO of ADASI, said, "ADASI prioritises participating in specialised defence events such as UMEX that offer an important platform to showcase our cutting-edge technologies and solutions in this niche industry. We look forward to the upcoming editions of UMEX and SimTEX where we hope to sign important business deals and forge productive partnerships."

Organised by ADNEC in collaboration with the UAE Armed Forces, UMEX 2018 will highlight new, advanced unmanned technologies and demonstrate how they can be utilised by militaries across the GCC region, in addition to exploring their potential civilian uses.

UMEX and SimTEX attract international delegations and decision-makers from within the defence and aerospace industry, as well as senior officials from key government and private sectors.


Aqdar, Watani Al Emarat signs MoU for national charter for students

posted on 23/02/2017

H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, yesterday attended the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Khalifa Student Empowerment Programme (Aqdar) and the Watani Al Emarat Foundation, which would strengthen their communication and promote partnerships to raise national awareness.

The MoU was signed by Ahmed Mohamed Al Maraan on behalf of the Supreme Committee of Aqdar, and Dherar Belhoul Al Falasi, Director-General of the Watani Al Emarat Foundation.

Under the terms of the MoU, Aqdar will provide the Watani Al Emarat Foundation with a comprehensive curriculum during the school year, train its co-ordinators and officers and introduce them to the programme's goals and structure, and co-operate in designing educational content for the programme's implementation.

Watani Al Emarat Foundation is committed to adopting the national awareness component as stated in the National Charter for Students, the main reference for unifying the preventive and awareness message for students. It also provides Aqdar with the annual working plan for their joint programmes.

Colonel Dr. Mohammed Ibrahim Al Dabal, General Co-ordinator of Aqdar, stated that both sides will work to promote loyalty, national belonging, citizenship values and the strengthening of community values, and co-operate to promote creativity and partnerships in the volunteering field, as well as encourage volunteers to actively participate in community service and humanitarian work. They will also hold workshops, seminars and cultural and awareness programmes.

Dherar Belhoul Al Falasi, Director-General of the Watani Al Emarat Foundation, praised the co-ordination and co-operation with Aqdar, noting that the MoU is an actual implementation of directives from the UAE leadership to unify national institutional efforts for students awareness.


Expo 2020 Dubai to serve world a taste of UAE

posted on 23/02/2017

Expo 2020 Dubai yesterday launched a search for producers of authentic Emirati and regional products including dates, Arabian coffee and sweets, chocolate and spices, which will form part of a warm, mouth-watering welcome offered to Expo's millions of visitors from around the world.

This is the second of up to 40 licensed product categories put out to tender by Expo following last month's campaign in search of souvenir manufacturers. Licensed food products will be sold at selected outlets across the UAE, including dedicated Expo retail stores that are expected to open in 2018, as well as the Expo 2020 Dubai site.

With the Dubai Food Festival kicking off later this week, Najeeb Al-Ali, Executive Director of Bureau Expo 2020 Dubai, said that he hopes the UAE-based food producers will be inspired to compete for the chance to benefit from Expo's reach. "We want to work with producers to create a range of products that authentically reflect our heritage and the multinational diversity of the modern UAE. We have an incredible, vibrant food scene that combines traditional Arabian products like qahwa, dates and spices, with international influences, and we want to share that with Expo 2020 Dubai visitors," he said.

"Our ambition is for the Expo opportunity to support the development of home-grown food brands. I hope that UAE-based SMEs and food-producers will harness their creativity and innovation to serve up high quality traditional and home-made treats that will appeal to the millions who visit both before and during the World Expo. We hope there will be something to appeal to the taste buds of everyone," Mr. Al-Ali added.

The tendering process to become a licensed-food producer at Expo 2020 is fully online and open to businesses of any size from anywhere in the world. The initial stage for companies to register their interest closes on 9th March 2017. A team from Expo 2020 Dubai will also be present at Gulfoods 2017, which kicks off on 26th February.

Anita Chandler, Director of Licensing and Merchandising at Expo 2020 Dubai, said that she relished working with licensees to develop innovative food concepts highlighting the skills of local producers, adding, "I'm really looking forward to finding high quality products and distinctive flavours of the UAE and the region. We're going to be welcoming millions of people from across the world in 2020, and I want them all to be able to take home something different, that leaves them with a lasting taste of the UAE."


DMC, DPC launch e-book edition for Arab Media Outlook report

posted on 23/02/2017

Dubai Media City, DMC, and Dubai Press Club, DPC, announced on Wednesday the launch of the e-book edition of the "Arab Media Outlook, 2016-2018: Youth..Content..Digital" report.

Available in an interactive digital format that conforms with the digital transformation era, the report reflects Dubai's strategy and approach to becoming amongst the world's smartest cities. The e-book is meant to reach a broader audience across the region, and is targeted at the Arab world's media professionals, academics, and students, as well as those looking to expand their knowledge of the media ecosystem.

The launch of the e-book comes at a time of rapid industry transformation that witnesses the growing impact of media and the adoption of social media platforms. The report also highlights key issues that require more effort, research and investment in the coming years as the media landscape evolves, covering key trends, changes and developments of the Arab media landscape in 14 Arab countries.

Majed Al Suwaidi, Managing Director of Dubai Media City, Dubai Studio City and Dubai Production City, said, "The media landscape across our region is rapidly evolving, with Dubai playing a leading role in the industry's transformation. The Arab Media Report brings to the fore credible insights and an outlook for the industry with the emergence of new channels, tools and platforms for media professionals."

"The efforts in developing this report is commendable, and makes this a definitive guide for entrepreneurs and established businesses who are looking to achieve growth in a new era for media. This report underlines our partnership with the Dubai Press Club, to drive industry-wide progress as the ways we create and consume content is changing," he added.

Director of the Dubai Press Club, Alia Al Theeb, said the publishing of the e-book edition of the report comes in line with Dubai's smart strategy, and the emirate's smart transformation. "Digital publishing serves as an efficient means to build bridges of communication with different cultures and civilisations. The Arab region's media industry has an important role to play in this."

Al Theeb confirmed that the fifth version of the report provides a clear insight into the media landscape for the coming era and the changes and developments it will witness.

She added, "These kind of reports are very important because they present in-depth information and key outcomes that should be addressed in research and analysis to identify the optimal ways to pursue the media development journey in accordance with the latest dynamics and changes imposed by the new media era."

Al Theeb continued, "The report serves as an important reference that offers reliable data to understand and analyse the changes in the media landscape in 14 Arab countries, in addition to future outlooks and trends, and represents a helpful and supportive tool for decision-making and policy development for the media sector.

The report provides media sector professionals with a detailed map with great deal of important data on continuously growing media sectors and how best to leverage them, as well as identifying best channels of communication with the content consumer.

It conducts an in-depth research and quantitative study including social media users in various areas of the Arab world, in addition to discussion groups of social media influencers. Social networking platforms were researched thoroughly including Snapchat, Periscope, Twitter, Facebook, Whatsapp, Instagram, YouTube, Google, and LinkedIn focusing on outlooks for social media channels and the expected updates and improvements in terms of use, content type, and preference.

The overall regional media market is expected to grow to US$12.4 billion by 2018. The key dynamic changing the region's media industry is youth engagement on digital platforms, with an increasing young population aged under 24 compromising almost 50 percent of the region, which is double that of many developed countries including the United States of America and the United Kingdom.

The report provides figures and numbers that help in understanding the social and economic impacts of social media in the Arab world from the viewpoint of social media users, economists, media and communication experts, and government officials, by highlighting use patterns of social media in the Arab world, in addition to measuring user impressions on the various channels.

The report showcases ways to keep up with this growing trend by exploring appropriate solutions and alternatives that ensure that the Arab media sector stay competitive. In addition, the report highlights the importance of finding ways to ensure the successful combination of digital platforms on one hand, and press, television, and radio, on the other hand, and using these platforms to support media in its conventional form to grow and maintain its position.


Female students at UAE University develop multi-task, multi-purpose "Smart Submarine"

posted on 23/02/2017

Students Amira Sulaiman, Shamsa Al Mansouri and Sarah Al Amri, under the supervision of Dr. Khawla Al Kaabi, Head of the Geography Department and Executive President for Innovation at UAE University, developed a multi-task and multi-purpose "Smart Submarine" for maritime navigation.

According to the students, the submarine is a modern technological equipment that utilises the latest developments in maritime navigation. It is equipped with sensors that measure the water temperature and the levels of salt and alkalinity, and provide accurate readings for the environment.

The submarine can provide a rich data source for maritime navigation and the environment on the sea floor, which will enable explorers and specialists to deal appropriately with the sea's environment, contributing to the production of accurate and beneficial data for serving navigation, they added.

The "Smart Submarine" is a new innovation and a new step in the race for challenge and creativity, which UAE University students have taken on as part of their educational journey, Dr. Al Kaabi said.

The submarine also serves the country's plans for advancing maritime navigation, and provides accurate data and statistics that can benefit specialists in the field, she added.

The submarine collects accurate data through a sonar that draws systemised and high-quality geographical maps of the sea floor, measures the degree of salt and alkaline in the water, and provides co-ordinates for different routes through the bottom of the sea, contributing to advances in maritime navigation, she further added.

According to Dr. Al Kaabi, the submarine can follow the activities of underwater teams, observe the work of maritime piracy, defeat the plans of pirates and detect petroleum leaks on the sea floor, as well as study and determine types of seaweeds, generate electricity from sea salt and search for missing bodies.

She added that the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX 2017) is an international platform to attract creative talent, and stated that UAE University is home to creative minds that can keep up with international changes and developments in all areas. The "Smart Submarine" was the starting innovation that suits the local environment, and was developed for military use, she further added.


Ministerial Development Council appoints Mohammed Jalal Al Raisi Executive Director of WAM

posted on 23/02/2017

The Ministerial Development Council has appointed Mohammed Jalal Al Raisi Executive Director of Emirates New Agency ( WAM ) with the grade of Assistant Under-Secretary at the National Media Council ( NMC ).


ERC sends more aid to population in Hadramaut

posted on 23/02/2017

HADRAMAUT: The Emirates Red Crescent, ERC, has sent urgent relief convoy to some areas in the Governorate of Hadramaut due to dire conditions endured by the population there.

The aid convoy is a continuation of the ERC's humanitarian aid programme and part of a number of campaigns carried out in all Hadramaut and other remote areas.

Beneficiaries expressed their happiness at the arrival of the convoy and stressed that it came at the right time to alleviate their suffering as result of the deterioration of the economic situation and disruption of the sources of income.