Debate to examine Emirati culture

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai yesterday reviewed a study that underlines the priority towards sustainable development and which also targets human resources in a bid to catapult the UAE to ranks of advanced nations.

The study was presented ahead of the UAE National Identity Conference which Sheikh Mohammed will open in Abu Dhabi today.

The keynote speech on relations between the UAE and the world community will be delivered by Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan .

The conference, to be chaired by Dr Mohammed Anwar Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, seeks to promote national identity, history and culture among UAE nationals. It is being hosted by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development. The meeting will provide a forum for the UAE elite to exchange views on the best ways to further boost the country’s national identity.

Speakers include Mohammed Al Bawardi, Secretary-General of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council; Lieutenant-General Dhahi Khalfan, Dubai Police Chief; Najla Al Anwar, Secretary-General of the Cabinet; Khaldoon Al Mubarak, Chairman of the Executive Affairs Authority; Abdul Aziz Abdullah Al Ghurair, Speaker of the Federal National Council; Rashid Al Oraimi, Editor-in-Chief of Al Ittihad newspaper; writer Abdul Ghaffar Hussain and Deputy Director General of Emirates Centre for Strategic Studies and Research and French ambassador to the UAE Patrice Paoli.

Participants  include representatives of federal ministries, members of Federal National Council and local departments, in addition to chief executive officers and senior management from large international corporations who will discuss some of the pressing issues relating to national identity, and provide recommendations on ways to enhance it.

The conference will address challenges facing national identity and establish ways to promote it. A wide range of topics relating to national identity and culture in the UAE will be discussed during the conference. The programme consists of seven individual sessions addressing important issues such as education, the experience of democracy, Arabic language, sports achievement, media, history and heritage.

The fourth session will focus on the reality of Arabic language in the UAE.

An interactive workshop will follow each session to find solutions and create recommendations to overcome some of the pressing issues surrounding identity and culture in the UAE. (Wam)