To chart its journey towards happiness and prosperity, the UAE government has made a comprehensive plan titled ‘UAE Centennial 2071’ which will usher in a new vision for the country.
It encompasses a national strategy to strengthen the country’s reputation and soft power, ensures that the government revenue is diversified, relying less on oil, introduces education programmes focused on advanced IT and engineering and consistently builds Emirati values and ethics for future generations. It also incorporates increasing productivity of the national economy and enhances community cohesion, which are also important aspects of the project. The programme also assumes significance as UAE will complete a centenary of its existence in the year 2071.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, launched 'UAE Centennial 2071’ and said, “Our objective is for future generations in the UAE to live happier lives in a thriving environment with abundant opportunity, more connectivity and global influence."
The programme aims to prepare young Emiratis for the future to ensure prosperity, growth and the continuity of the UAE's values. This will create security and happiness, allowing future generations to excel and contribute to making the UAE the best country in the world.
The programme will focus on four main objectives. The first is to develop a flexible government with mindful leadership and a clear vision that prioritises the people and spreads positive messages. The second is to invest in education, focusing on advanced IT and establishing professionalism and ethics in educational institutions. The third is to establish a diversified, globally competitive economy, and the fourth is to consolidate the values of tolerance, social cohesion and respect in society within a comprehensive development plan to make the UAE the best country in the world.
Under UAE Centennial 2071, the government of the UAE will endeavour to become the best government in the world having a long-term vision and inspirational leadership that anticipates, and prepares for, the future. Other objectives include achieving happiness in society and spreading positive messages internally and to the world, developing mechanisms for monitoring long-term variables in various sectors and measuring their impact on future generations, and establishing Youth Advisory Councils to consider young citizens' perspectives when establishing development policies.
In the field of education, UAE Centennial 2071 highlights the role of excellent quality of education. Certain areas of focus in education include advanced science and technology, space science, engineering, innovation and health sciences. Also included is the importance of teaching students to look ahead and instilling a culture of openness by teaching history, culture, the civilisations of other countries and teaching new languages such as Japanese, Chinese and Korean. Other educational measures include teaching students mechanisms for discovering their individual talents early. On the institutional level, educational institutions are encouraged to innovate.
As far as the economy is concerned, UAE Centennial 2071 seeks to establish a diversified economy by, among other things, increasing the productivity of the national economy, supporting national companies so they may become competitive on the global stage and investing in research and development in promising sectors. In this regard, another objective is to nurture a generation of Emirati inventors and scientists, supporting their contributions.
Community development is an integral part of UAE Centennial 2071. Some objectives in this regard include establishing a secure, tolerant, cohesive and ethical society that provides a high quality of life (including in health and sports). The pillar also focuses on developing programmes to prepare future generations to serve as UAE ambassadors and role models, as well as promoting women's participation in all sectors.