Abu Dhabi: The government is confidently progressing to deliver indicators of the National Agenda leading to the UAE Vision 2021 which seeks to develop and improve conditions in areas of justice, security, economy, environment, living standards, housing, education, health and infrastructure, declared UAE President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
"The government has adopted and approved national policies and strategies for innovation, creativity, excellence, reading, research and development, the future, housing, women and youth empowerment and happiness. In this respect, the Emirates Council for Youth and the Emirates Council for Scientists were set up,’’ said His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed in his address to the nation on the occasion of the 45th National Day.
The government, Shaikh Khalifa stated, had also taken significant strides in developing the legislative and regulatory framework to attract investment and introducing policies to promote the concept of green economy and comply with principles of sustainability, protection of the environment and conservation of natural resources. It has also approved plans to upgrade and improve educational and health services, modernise the infrastructure and qualify youths to easily enter the job market.
These efforts, the President said, had begun to pay off.
"On the micro economy, despite the sump in global economy and decline in world oil prices, our national economy has maintained vibrant performance and the Gross Domestic Product has exceeded the set target thanks to vibrancy, resilience and diversification of the economic infrastructure and high contributions of non-oil sectors,’’ His Highness the President added.
His Highness noted that the UAE was ranked first regionally and 16th globally, maintaining its lead among the top 20 competitive economies in the world, according to the Global Competitiveness Report 2016 issued by the World Economic Forum (Davos) in Switzerland. The UAE has also retained its lead in the region in more than 100 development indicators.
Politically, the President said, “We have reshuffled the Federal Cabinet to include key components of the community and to reflect the transformations the state is going through. We have also amended the UAE Constitution to double the membership of the Federal National Council and expand its powers and we will celebrate the tenth anniversary of the first ever national elections within the coming days.’’
In the coming five years leading to UAE Vision 2021, Shaikh Khalifa explained that government efforts will focus on drawing a roadmap for the empowerment programme that steers and guides the gradual process to build a secure state based on the rule of law and justice; a competitive economy, sustainable environment, integrated infrastructure, high quality education system and world class health facilities; a state that has a coherent society founded on values of tolerance and moderation and a close-knit family built on love and understanding.
The President expressed his unflinching support for the Moral Education initiative, launched by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.
‘’We hope that the educational, cultural, religious, media, youth, sports and women institutions and organisations will come together and rally behind the initiative by promoting the values of sustainability, integrity, righteousness, mercy, justice, respect of law, and spreading the culture of tolerance, co-existence, centrism, moderation, and pride and veneration of national symbols and figures.
Internationally, the President reiterated the UAE’s firm stance to remain committed to a flexible, dynamic foreign policy, whose main objective is to serve national interests, preserve the sovereignty of the state and consolidate the GCC, to defend the Arab right and solidify Islamic unity.
Mohammad Bin Rashid:
National Day is a chance to evaluate the country's achievements and performance
His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, said that celebrating National Day is a chance to evaluate the country’s achievements and performance during the past year, as every year is a leap in the journey of the UAE’s great union.
Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid added that securing a prominent and leading place for the UAE in the future depends on its competence to foresee the future and the efficiency of both government and private sectors in keeping pace with future changes, adapting to its requirements in a timely manner.
Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid said, “Our Armed Forces heroes are sharing the celebrations with us while answering the call of their national, humanitarian and moral duty, locked in battles in support of what is right and to counter the aggression on the brotherly Yemen, extinguishing the forces of evil and sedition’s fire before their sparks ignite fires in our region and the Arab world.”
In a speech to Dira’a Al Watan, The Nation Shield magazine on the occasion of the 45th National Day, Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid said that while we are celebrating the occasion, our union becomes stronger due to the determination of the sons and daughters of the UAE, the unremitting efforts to place the UAE on the map of the future as their ambitions and aspirations have no limits, driven by their love for the homeland and their devotion to their leadership; a leadership that does not skimp on them in any way, and provides them with all reasons to embrace innovation and giving.
Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid noted, “Celebrating National Day gives us, the government and the people, a chance to evaluate ourselves and our performance over the past year, for every year is a leap in the journey of our great Union.”
Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid said, “I congratulate you on the occasion, and bring you good news that we are heading apace towards achieving our major goals; in the promotion of the status of our state and happiness of our people, reaching the highest levels of progress, civilisation and refinement, relying on the minds and arms of our sons and daughters, and their dedication and confidence.
As we are celebrating the 45th National Day, an elite of our Armed Forces heroes are sharing the celebrations with us while answering the call of their national, humanitarian and moral duty, locked in battles in support of what is right and to counter the aggression on the brotherly Yemen, extinguishing the forces of evil and sedition’s fire before their sparks ignite fires in our region and the Arab world.
Also, other teams of heroes, the military, our security services, and our civil protection teams, are deployed all around our country and in every corner as a bulwark to watch over, ensure our security and safety, and protect the country as an oasis of security, peace and stability.
“In our quest into the future, we realise that our success in securing a prominent and leading place for our country depends on our competence in foreseeing what is ahead of us, as well as on the efficiency of both government and private sectors in keeping pace with future changes and adapting to its requirements in a timely manner.”
Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid, said, “The UAE government, in its current structure, plans, programmes and projects, is the government of the future, we want our society to be the society of the future, too.”
Everyone required to act responsibly towards himself and his country
His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, said that variables and developments of life require everyone to act responsibly towards himself and his country and to work on developing his skills and abilities, respecting others’ abilities to be able to face the challenges of life.
In a speech to Dira’a Al Watan, The Nation Shield magazine, on the occasion of 45th National Day, Dr Shaikh Sultan congratulated Shaikh Khalifa and Their Highnesses the Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates and the people of the UAE.
Dr Shaikh Sultan added, “I want every Emirati citizen to keep this date in his heart and mind, so that what we started hand in hand with the previous generations will be a role model for each coming generation: it is altruism, it is patriotism, it is fidelity to the homeland, it is the responsibility and conscious vision of the future.”
The Ruler of Sharjah went on to say: “Variables and developments of life require everyone to act responsibly towards himself and his country, and to expedite working on developing his skills and abilities, respecting the others’ abilities to be able to learn and benefit from them and boost our abilities to face the challenges of life. Let us keep the bright spotlight of our consciences shining towards our homeland, never to fade.
“Let us consider what is going in the world. What we live today, all around us, is a lesson from life and history that we cannot afford to miss. Illustrating that awareness, that enlightenment and the realisation of the true nature of mind, your authentic love for your homeland is what will guide you at every step towards a better future for yourself, your family, big or small, your beloved homeland, that offered you all the love, generosity and devotion; and today it’s your generation’s turn.”
The Sharjah Ruler concluded by saying, “God bless our people and our country and may its gleams of sunshine be bright and as long as life itself.”
Ruler of Ajman:
Unity is the way to strength, honour and power
Speaking to the UAE’s military and strategic journal, Nation Shield magazine, on the occasion of the UAE’s 45th National Day, His Highness Shaikh Humaid Bin Rashid Al Nuaimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Ajman, said: “Talking about the Union remains one of my favourite things, as it relates to the memory of the late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan. On this day, we renew our vow to come together in unity and to be pure in our intentions. We vow that the journey of doing good and hard work will continue under the leadership of President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan. This is the vow we took.”
Shaikh Humaid added: “At the time of the Union’s founding, the world was not as advanced as it is today, and yet through insight, great vision, hope and ambitions for the future, the Union became an inevitable path and an unavoidable aim. Everyone who has witnessed this progress stands today with awe and gratitude, observing the proof of this progress and remembering the words of the late Shaikh Zayed when he said, “Unity is the way to strength, honour and power. Division only leads to weakness. There is no place in today’s world for weak entities. These are the lessons of history throughout the ages.”
“The second of December 1971 is a date of great significance to us all, and shall always be remembered for the beautiful meanings and values it represents. It was a turning point in our lives and a great boost in our country’s economy and the service of its people. That was the result of a stable approach and a clear vision and definition of leadership, and the effects these benefits had on the construction of a modern state and building of its foundations, leading it towards a higher status and increased prosperity.”
He continued: “The experience of being unified, as witnessed by the UAE 45 years ago, remains a great and unique achievement, as the state was transformed during the past four and a half decades since its founding into a modern, prosperous country on a path towards progress and civilisation, and with great stability and capabilities.
“Under the Union, the state has witnessed a great educational, economic, architectural and agricultural renaissance that has fulfilled the needs for the present and the future in a unique developmental process involving the quality of human life, and the environmental and economic needs of the people. The quality of life in UAE placed the state at the top amongst the most advanced countries in the world that have made sustainable development one of their top priorities.”
His Highness Shaikh Hamad Bin Mohammad Al Sharqi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Fujairah, said the UAE is celebrating the 45th anniversary of a day that was a turning point in the nation’s history.
In a statement made to Nation Shield magazine to mark the day, Shaikh Hamad said the great achievement made by the late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan and his brothers, the founding fathers, had influenced the UAE’s approach of focusing on the development of Emiratis, who are the country’s true asset.
“The legacy of the late Shaikh Zayed and the other founding fathers will live on to guide and inspire the UAE’s continuous progress,” he said.
“Today, we complete 45 years of development, stability and security, thanks to the vision of our prudent leadership. Today, we express pride in the UAE’s leading (position) in all fields. The UAE has become a global role model for providing the highest quality of life to citizens and for ensuring further progress and prosperity to future generations.”
National Day, Shaikh Hamad continued, is engraved in the hearts of all Emiratis. “It is the day that gives us the power and determination and lights our way, as we march confidently to the future. We are inspired by the values and principles followed by the founders of the union.”
Shaikh Hamad noted that the current crises in the region have strengthened the resolve among the people of the UAE to protect their union from any looming dangers.
“This requires us to double efforts to safeguard our achievements and to always work for a better (future). We are confident that the people of the UAE are capable of maintaining the progress and of keeping the legacy of pride, glory and dignity, left by our founding fathers.
“The 2nd of December is a day of joy for the UAE citizens and residents. It is a time when they can express their love and allegiance to the UAE,” he added.
He concluded by extending his greetings to President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and praying to Allah Almighty to reward the founder of the UAE, Shaikh Zayed, with paradise.
Umm Al Quwain Ruler:
UAE's proud union continues to strengthen
His Highness Shaikh Saud Bin Rashid Al Mualla, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Umm Al Quwain, said that as the UAE reaches its 45th anniversary, the country’s union continues to strengthen daily, and its outstanding achievements are evident in many fields.
In a speech to Nation Shield magazine on the occasion of the UAE’s 45th National Day, the Ruler of Umm Al Qaiwain also said that under the leadership of President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE has adopted a number of exceptional and ambitious development programmes to aid the progress of the nation, and achieve the happiness of Emiratis who hold their country dear to their hearts.
“On multiple occasions, our people have expressed loyalty and made sacrifices while taking part in Operation Decisive Storm, as our martyrs expressed loyalty through their sacrifices for the homeland. Emiratis have proven their willingness to defend their country with strength and heroism, pride and loyalty.”
He also said that since the early years of the union, the UAE has made huge achievements in record time in various fields through ambitious strategies in accordance with the latest international standards for the benefit of Emiratis as part of a comprehensive development programme.
The UAQ Ruler stressed that the UAE citizens proved their ability and responsibility to achieve, thanks to their qualifications, skills and determination.
Shaikh Saud confirmed that the UAE Government, led by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has introduced new strategies and made creative initiatives, including the appointment of young and ambitious leaders as members of the Cabinet.
The initiatives also aim to implement programmes and strategies to actively develop the community and prepare educated and qualified generations which would enable the country to maintain its top rankings globally.
He added that preparing highly educated human resources who are on par with the ambitious programmes gleaned from the far-sighted vision of the leadership contribute to establishing a modern state that races against time to achieve happiness for its citizens.
Shaikh Saud referred to modernisation of the UAE Armed Forces according to latest international standards, in line with the national and strategic objective since the establishment of the union.
“His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, has notably contributed to upgrading the armed forces’ operational capabilities and readiness to become a key regional player in defending the country’s achievements,” he said.
The UAQ Ruler reiterated: “On this occasion, we are happy to express our absolute pride of the UAE Armed Forces and express our respect and appreciation to the sacrifices of the martyrs of the nation.”
He concluded that martyrs’ precious sacrifices represent a role model for all Emiratis and a symbol of our pride.
“We hail the high spirit demonstrated by the families of martyrs and their loyalty to their leadership and the homeland. We pray to Allah the Almighty to rest their souls in Paradise,” he said.
Ras Al-Khaimah Ruler:
Foundation of UAE remains most cherished memory
His Highness Shaikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, said that the unique experience of the Union and the founding of the UAE Federation 45 years ago remains the most cherished memory in the history of our young nation.
“It set the most amazing examples while it was transforming into a modern state with solid pillars that is moving steadily into modernity of various human and civilisational aspects,” said Shaikh Saud on the occasion of the 45th UAE National Day in a statement to the Dira’ al Watan, Nation Shield, magazine.
“The top priority of this state is the dignity, glory and preparation of man, the centre and the safety valve of development, which achieves happiness for its generous people. It is the inevitable result of a close relationship between a wise leadership and a people showing the most sublime manifestations of loyalty and sincerity due to their firm belief in firm patriotic values of protecting the assets and gains of the nation,” Shaikh Saud said.
Shaikh Saud paid tribute to the top leaders for driving sweeping overall development across the UAE, inspired by the legacy and insightful vision of the late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founder of the UAE, who “had all the characteristics of a historical leader”.
“We firmly believe that all these achievements would have not been possible without our collective commitment to the patriotic firm principles of our solid union, in response to the call of Allah Almighty who says in the Holy Quran, ‘And hold fast, all of you together, to the Rope of Allah, and be not divided among yourselves.’
"That is the only option we have, and the only way to achieve security, stability and prosperity of a modern federal state in which all people enjoy glory and feel proud to stand behind their wise leadership. The leadership counts on the people giving them full freedom to achieve glory for the nation, build its civilisation and achieve the desired progress in all spheres in order to earn it an outstanding position among advanced nations.
“Today as we celebrate the 45th anniversary of the launch of the union experience, we should remember the significant role that the founding father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, God rest his soul, played, sparing no efforts and embracing an insightful future outlook to lay the foundations of the union which has been shining brightly across the nation.
"Further achievements ensued, thanks to his keen follow up of the stages of development in the UAE, building on traits of a historical leader. His actions had a significant positive impact, spreading prosperity and safety across the UAE and the surrounding Arab states in the region, and beyond, into states that needed assistance.”