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UAE plans to establish first Space Research Center in Middle East
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 27 - 05 - 2015

DUBAI — The UAE Space Agency is hosting the two-day Global Space & Satellite Forum (GSSF) 2015. Taking place in Abu Dhabi until today (May 27), the event brings together more than 400 C-level executives, senior decision makers and government officials from the space and satellite sector.
The gathering discusses topics such as space technology applications, innovative solutions, low-cost satellite developments such as miniature satellites, and how satellite systems are improving lives – ranging from life-saving developments in disaster management to the delivery of entertainment media via handheld consumer devices.
The UAE Space Agency's Director General Dr. Mohammed Nasser Al Ahbabi said: "The UAE Space Agency has drafted its strategic plan in line with the vision of the wise leadership of the UAE and the UAE Vision 2021 aimed at establishing the UAE as one of the world's leading countries in time for the UAE's Golden Jubilee, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the founding of the nation."
Dr. Al Ahbabi noted that the UAE Space Agency's focus on human development would be a true pillar of future progress. Over the course of 2015, the UAE Space Agency will select 15 gifted students as an academic delegation traveling overseas and within the UAE.
This educational mission will be in partnership with the Ministry of Presidential Affairs and the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Fund.
The UAE Space Agency will work with educational and academic bodies to use the concept of space as an inspiration and encouragement for students to embark on the study of science and technology in order to contribute to the UAE's journey toward space.
Dr. Al Ahbabi also revealed that the agency is working on the establishment of the first Space Research Center in the Middle East.
The center, which will cost nearly AED100 million over five years, is the result of a strategic partnership between the UAE Space Agency, UAE University and the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority represented by the ICT Fund.
The centre will act as an incubator for space research and innovation at the federal level. To that end, the UAE Space Agency will coordinate with a number of agencies to implement the Emirates Mobile Observatory projects, to help enrich research and innovation in the field of space.
The UAE Space Agency indicated that the strategic plan was part of an overall vision of "proudly crafting the future of the United Arab Emirates as a leader in space, and to inspire future generations for the benefit of the nation and humankind."
This goal is backed by its mission in organizing and guiding the space sector, contributing to the national economy and sustainable development, preparing generations of highly skilled professionals, and developing space research, programs and strategic partnerships.
The UAE Space Agency's strategic plan consists of four main objectives. The first is to develop and guide a world-class national space sector that serves the country's highest interests, contributes to a diversified national economy and supports sustainable development.
The second is to promote scientific research and innovation to support the state's scientific progress in space sciences and technologies.
The third is to attract and promote national resources to become space scientists and technology pioneers. The Agency's fourth objective is to build and enhance international cooperation and partnership in a manner that serves the national space sector and that provides administrative services with high quality standards and transparency.
The UAE Space Agency will create international partnerships to develop the national space sector in order to contribute to and facilitate knowledge transfers of space technology.
The agency also aims to represent the UAE in international conventions and programs, the application of space technology, as well as contributing to space conferences and seminars within and outside the UAE.
Moreover, the agency will lend a helping hand to the tech sector in utilizing space science and technology in the UAE.
It will also provide consultation and technical support for all space sector stakeholders in the UAE.
Within the framework of those objectives, the strategic plan will be built on five pillars: Emirati pride, integrity, excellence, commitment, cooperation and innovation. –SG


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