H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and H.H. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah and Chairman of Sharjah Executive Council, attended the fifth session of UAE Economic Planning Forum "UAE EPF" on Wednesday, 21st November, 2018.
The forum was held in Al Jawaher Reception and Convention Centre under the slogan "Future Economy Accelerators... Knowledge... Innovation and Developing Human Cadres".
The forum was organised by the Sharjah Economic Development Department, SEDD, with the strategic support of the Ministry of Economy and the Department of Economic Development in Abu Dhabi. It aimed to promote the integration of all emirates in the field of economic planning and to discuss best ways to boost economic growth and enhance the competitiveness in UAE.
The forum was attended by number of Sheikhs, as well as Sultan Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy; Sultan Abdullah bin Hadda Al Suwaidi, SEDD Chairman; Saif Mohammed Al Hajeri, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development, a number of ministers, heads of local and federal departments, and numerous officials.
The forum began with the national anthem followed by a film about economic development in the emirate.
Al Mansouri said that holding the forum in Sharjah this year is an ideal opportunity to highlight the economic growth and developments in the emirate in various fields under the vision of the Ruler of Sharjah and how it has become a key player in the development of the UAE economy and in increasing its diversity and sustainability.
Through the sessions at the forum, the ministry and other concerned parties will be able to consolidate mutual plans and efforts to develop sustainable economic growth prospects for the future in the UAE. The concentration on the government accelerator model is a unique opportunity, he added.
Strategic planning has always been one of the main pillars of UAE's development since it was initiated, Al Mansouri said and added that such planning is an approach begun by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and the other rulers.
Sultan Abdullah bin Hadda Al Suwaidi, SEDD Chairman, expressed his thanks and appreciation to Dr. Sheikh Sultan for his generous patronage of the forum and his support for Sharjah’s economic and social development.
He also thanked the Ministry of Economy and the Department of Economic Development in Abu Dhabi as well as all partners for their efforts in making this forum a success.
The SEDD Chairman pointed out that while UAE Economic Planning Forum discusses international, regional and local economic challenges, it also places great aspirations and hopes on diversifying the economy, anticipating sustainable development standards, raising the knowledge and innovation component of society and enhancing the competitive position of the economy. He stressed the importance of providing jobs to citizens that are based on their innovative capabilities.
He spoke about the economic and developmental challenges the country, including Sharjah, has faced. It required the department to double the effort to increase the GDP, which achieved growth of 4.7 percent last year. Sharjah adopts a model that applies the concept of "economic balance" as an alternative to the concept of "economic growth," as no sector occupies more than 20 percent of the GDP of the emirate.
The SEDD Chairman said that according to the wise directives of the Ruler of Sharjah, to support economic work for UAE citizens, the department had released excellence marks for national pilot projects, and more markets and economic activities for citizens have been integrated.
Al Hajeri illustrated that having Sharjah as the host for the forum is important in the path of sustainable economic development of UAE under the guidance of the wise leadership. It helped in attaining government accelerators and transferred them into successful initiatives and projects that meet the vision of UAE 2021.
Later, Sheikh Sultan honoured the strategic partners and sponsors of UAE Economic Planning Forum.