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Saadiyat Cultural District in Abu Dhabi set for completion in 2025

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The Saadiyat Cultural District is on track for completion by the end of 2025, the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi has announced.

Saadiyat Cultural District is a global platform, emanating from a rich cultural heritage, celebrating traditions, and advancing equitable culture. It is an embodiment of empowerment, showcasing museums, collections, and narratives that celebrate the region’s heritage while promoting a diverse global cultural landscape.

Once completed, the diversity of Saadiyat Cultural District’s institutions will make the district one of the most unique cultural platforms. It is already the home of Louvre Abu Dhabi – the first universal museum in the Arab world – showcasing artworks from different cultures side by side and telling a story of human connections. Since opening in 2017, Louvre Abu Dhabi has welcomed 5 million visitors and is recognised for its breathtaking architecture and its innovative narrative. Nearby, Berklee Abu Dhabi offers music, performing arts and educational programmes throughout the year.

Additionally, Manarat Al Saadiyat serves as a centre for creative artistic expression and is home to two significant initiatives in Abu Dhabi’s cultural calendar: Abu Dhabi Art and Culture Summit Abu Dhabi.

The current construction progress of the soon-to-open institutions in Saadiyat Cultural District stands at 76 percent. Zayed National Museum, the national museum of the United Arab Emirates, will celebrate the nation’s rich history and culture, as well as honour the legacy of the country’s founding father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Additionally, teamLab Phenomena Abu Dhabi invites visitors to an ever-changing exploration that will transcend the limits of their imagination.

It will be joined by the Natural History Museum Abu Dhabi, which will include a research and teaching institution that will take visitors on a 13.8 billion-year journey through the story of our universe and our planet. Guggenheim Abu Dhabi will be a museum celebrating art from the 1960s to the present and the most important artistic achievements of our time.

Saadiyat Cultural District pays homage to the legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed, who defined the cultural agenda and unveiled the history of the UAE to the world through archaeological excavations and findings. This legacy began with the establishment of Al Ain Museum, the first museum in the UAE, which opened in 1971. This was followed by the inauguration of the Cultural Foundation in 1981. Sheikh Zayed’s legacy continued to evolve under the guidance of the late Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Today, President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and H.H. Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council, continue to build on that legacy.

Mohamed Al Mubarak, Chairman of DCT Abu Dhabi, said, “Culture transcends mere connections; it shapes our very evolution and broadens our perspectives. Here in Abu Dhabi, we embrace this influence, fostering a deep appreciation that resonates throughout our community. Saadiyat Cultural District embodies ‘cultural hope’. The District will convey a message of cultural diversity that will become more powerful over time, creating global connections, inspiring cultural exchange, and fostering new ways of thinking to support the region, the global South and the world. Saadiyat Cultural District is somewhere people can come to learn from the past, understand our present and focus on our future.”

Saadiyat Cultural District is a testament to Abu Dhabi’s commitment to preserving heritage while embracing a forward-looking vision. The District invites the world to engage with diverse cultures, fostering dialogue and exchange, and offers a global cultural space that empowers the region and the global south.

DCT Abu Dhabi has also launched a compelling campaign titled ‘Be Moved in a Thousand Ways’, introduced by philanthropist, talk show host and author Oprah Winfrey and broadcaster Mona El Shazli. The campaign film delivers an inspirational message on the transformative power of culture to unite, inspire, and open minds. Contributors to the campaign include Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman of DCT Abu Dhabi; Zaki Nusseibeh, Cultural Adviser to the UAE President and Chancellor of the United Arab Emirates University (UAEU); Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of State; Norman Foster, Pritzker Architecture Prize-winner and architect of the Zayed National Museum; Mariët Westermann, Director and CEO of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation, celebrated artists Mohammed Ibrahim, Najat Makki, Afra Al Dhaheri from the UAE; multi-award winning Actor, Musician and Entrepreneur Idris Elba OBE; legendary pianist Lang Lang and many more.

Announcements

Sheikh Mohammed pardons 686 prisoners ahead of Eid Al Adha 2024

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Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, on Thursday ordered the release of 686 inmates in correctional facilities on the occasion of Eid Al Adha.

Counselor Issam Issa Al Humaidan, Attorney General of the Emirate of Dubai said that the Public Prosecution immediately began coordinating with the Dubai Police General Command to implement the release order.

President Sheikh Mohamed had earlier ordered the release of 1,138 prisoners. These inmates have been sentenced in various cases, and the President ensured the payment of the fines owed to them.

It is common practice for Rulers of each of the UAE’s emirates to pardon prisoners during significant Islamic occasions. The President’s pardon allows the released prisoners to rethink their future and positively contribute to the service of their families and communities to lead successful social and professional lives.

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22 Chief AI officers appointed in government entities

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H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, said that under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Dubai remains committed to developing a pioneering model for AI-enabled government operations, as part of its broader vision to establish itself as a global leader in government innovation.
His Highness made these remarks on the occasion of appointing 22 Chief Artificial Intelligence Officers across various government entities in Dubai, who will spearhead specialised plans and programmes in the field of AI and advanced technology.

Sheikh Hamdan said: “We have approved the appointment of 22 Chief AI Officers across government entities in Dubai as part of a forward-looking vision aimed at leveraging AI to enhance government operations. This initiative will enhance Dubai’s progress and expertise in this sector and consolidate its position as a leader in creating innovative solutions built on advanced technology.”
“The accelerated adoption of AI, alongside the development of its tools and applications, represents a cornerstone of the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, aimed at positioning Dubai as a global hub for the development and deployment of AI solutions,” His Highness added.
“The appointment of the new Chief AI Officers in the Dubai government marks the initial phase toward realising our vision for the future of government work, in line with the Dubai Universal Blueprint for Artificial Intelligence. We are confident that these officers will intensify their efforts and go the extra mile in translating our vision into reality. Their commitment is crucial in turning our ambitious plans into concrete actions that will shape the future of AI-enabled government operations in Dubai,” His Highness said.
The Chief AI Officer position was established under the Dubai Universal Blueprint for Artificial Intelligence (DUB.AI), designed to enrich the quality of life and well-being of residents. Additionally, it supports Dubai’s endeavour to become the most future-ready city, consolidating its leadership as a global hub for technology and innovation.
DUB.AI aims to cement the emirate’s position as a global hub for AI governance and legislation, while facilitating AI adoption across strategic sectors. Additionally, the initiative bolsters Dubai’s standing in the Global AI Readiness Index, where it presently holds a position in the top 10.
The newly appointed Chief AI Officers represent several government entities across Dubai including: Community Development Authority in Dubai, Dubai Government Human Resources Department, Dubai Customs, Dubai Police, The Judicial Council, Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Mohammed Bin Rashid Housing Establishment, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, Digital Dubai Authority, General Directorate of Civil Defense in Dubai, Dubai Data and Statistics Establishment, Dubai Health Authority, Public Prosecution, Protocol Department in Dubai, Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority, Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, Hamdan Bin Mohammed Smart University, Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism, Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services, Department of Finance in Dubai, Endowments and Minors’ Trust Foundation (Awqaf Dubai), and Dubai Municipality.

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UAE announces new telemarketing rules to protect consumers

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Cold callers in the UAE face fines of AED 150,000 under strict new regulations announced by the Ministry of Economy, and the Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TRA), aimed at protecting people from persistent telemarketers.

From August, companies will be barred from calling customers back if they reject the service in the initial conversation and they cannot phone back if the call is declined or ended. 

Telemarketing calls will also only be allowed to be made from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and companies will need prior approval from authorities and face the threat of termination of operating licences if rules are broken.  When the new rules come in marketing calls can only be made from numbers of licensed companies as opposed to individual or personal numbers. 

Customers can file a complaint if any of the new rules are broken. The rules apply to all companies in the UAE, including those in free zones. 

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