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UAE government launches ‘Coders HQ’ to empower local, global coding communities

DUBAI, 11th January, 2022 (WAM) — Embodying the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, the UAE government launched the Coders HQ, a new transformational project that re-defines local coding communities, in partnership with more than 40 companies in the UAE and worldwide.

The project, established in the Emirates Towers, aims to build a new generation of coders, enhance their capabilities and skills in the fields of coding and technology, empower them with top-notch tools and expertise, and provide them with the opportunity to design innovative solutions to address local and global challenges, thus consolidating the UAE’s leading position as a global hub for coders and digital economy.

The project was launched in a virtual ceremony organised by the National Programme for Coders, in the presence of Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy, and Teleworking Applications, and representatives of partners in the project. Participants reviewed the key initiatives and programs that the Coders HQ will launch over the coming period.

Omar Sultan Al Olama said that launching the Coders HQ, comes under the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, to develop advanced coding communities as a key driver for shaping the future and harnessing the new, fast-growing digital economy, thus achieving the leadership’s vision and the 10 principles for the next 50 years, namely consolidating the position of the UAE as a global hub for talents, startups and innovators.

He added that the project embodies the UAE’s vision in preparing a new generation of coders, capable of finding innovative solutions to future challenges, exploring new opportunities to build a competitive knowledge-based economy, and creating a comprehensive development process based on investing in skills and talents to build their future capabilities. It further provides an incubating and stimulating environment for skilled coders, building an enabling ecosystem to help them innovate technical solutions to address challenges.

As one of the projects and initiatives of the National Programme for Coders, the Coders HQ aims to consolidate the position of the UAE as a global hub for coders and an incubating ecosystem for projects and innovative ideas for building a better future. It further features advanced technological infrastructure to facilitate coders’ work, and includes an events space, a supercomputer, and several workspaces. Over the coming period, 6 new coders’ HQs will be inaugurated all around the UAE.

The Coders’ HQ focuses on Four main objectives, namely, assessing the skills of coders in the UAE, developing them, enabling continuous communication among coders in the UAE and abroad, and providing coders with the best opportunities to help them enhance the UAE's leadership in this field.

Among its activities, the project encompasses Nine main initiatives, namely "HQ learn" to provide practical training courses in different coding fields to different levels of coders, "HQ assessment" to provide a mechanism for evaluating the skills and performance of coders, "HQ meetups", which focuses on developing and incubating software communities in all fields, and "HQ challenges", to share private sector challenges whose winners receive prizes.

The Project also launched the "HQ hackathons" to organise a series of short hackathons in partnership with the private sector, where winners will be eligible for prizes, the "HQ conferences" to attract mega international conferences specialised in coding to the UAE, the "HQ get inspired" to hold a series of inspiring sessions presented by CEOs and technical influencers, "HQ internship", to provide training opportunities for Emirati graduates in the digital companies, as well as "HQ 021", a joint project with the United Arab Emirates National and Reserve Service Authority (UAENSR) to develop the talents of national service coders and help them reach global levels.

In line with the UAE's wise leadership directions exhibited in the "Principles of the 50" document, the Coders HQ further announced organising training programs for Emiratis to facilitate their participation in the various fields of coding in the private sector, while providing them with the best global knowledge to hone their skills. 40 government, semi-government, private and academic entities will provide support to the training processes to help achieve the defined objectives and yield the best outcomes. These include Abu Dhabi University, Majid Al Futtaim Holding, Microsoft Middle East and Africa, IBM, Presales MERAT, Meta, Rabdan Academy, the American University in Dubai, DP World, ADNOC, and VMware.

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Canadian Ambassador to UAE welcomes launch of Canada-UAE Sovereign Wealth Fund Council

ABU DHABI, 1st April, 2023 (WAM) — Canadian Ambassador to the UAE, Kris Panday, has welcomed the launch of the Canada-UAE Sovereign Wealth Fund Council (SWFC).

“The mission of the SWFC is to harness the synergies between Canada and the UAE’s preeminent institutional investors to deliver superior risk-adjusted returns in support of common interests”, said the Ambassador.

The SWFC will help identify opportunities for strategic capital collaboration and thought leadership between Canadian public Pension Funds (PPFs) and UAE Sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) in global markets, he noted.

It is designed to offer an investment collaboration framework that has a more dynamic and flexible structure benefitting Canada and the UAE as two key investment partners, Panday said.

Panday will serve as Chief Co-Patron of the SWFC along with Fahad Saeed Al Raqbani, the UAE Ambassador to Canada.

Shezad Rokerya has been appointed as Senior Advisor to Ambassador Panday and will serve as Chairman of the SWFC.

Ambassador Al Raqbani said, “Through the Canada-UAE SWFC we have the capacity to capitalise on the individual strengths of both countries, bringing together innovative ideas, expert knowledge, and resources to power sustainable economic development and investment possibilities.”

He added, “This partnership paves the way for further cooperation that will impact the global financial outlook in the future. It is not only a strategic opportunity but also a shared responsibility in constructing a more sustainable and equitable future for all.”

Rokerya, SWFC Chairman, said, “The top six Canadian PPFs and UAE SWFs cumulatively manage over US$3 trillion in assets. The SWFC will enable these stakeholders to jointly develop investment strategies and deploy capital globally in a transformative and impactful manner to achieve significant value creation.”

This initiative will serve as a catalyst for empowering multiple constituents from both Canada and the UAE to strategically develop and collaborate in investments globally. The SWFC stakeholders will be able to leverage each other’s respective strengths, challenges, experience and thought leadership in each asset class, sector, and geographic influence to develop areas of collaboration. The SWFC will lead discussions with senior leadership from Canadian PPFs and UAE SWFs to develop a governance framework and outline shared alignment and overarching criteria for the development of potential co-investment strategies.

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Alfardan Group supports ‘1 Billion Meals Endowment’ campaign with a AED5 million contribution

DUBAI, 1st April, 2023 (WAM) — Alfardan Group announced its contribution of AED 5 million in support of “1 Billion Meals Endowment” campaign, launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to establish the largest Ramadan sustainable food aid endowment fund.

Organised by Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives to coincide with the holy month of Ramadan, the campaign aims to provide a food safety net for the world’s most underprivileged populations in countries struggling with food insecurity, as well as help vulnerable groups including victims of natural disasters and crises.

Alfardan Group pledged to contribute AED 5 million over a period of 5 years to help launch the largest food aid endowment fund, thereby reviving the culture of endowment as a tool for development and sustainable charity.

Creating Change
Ali Fardan Al Fardan, Chairman of Alfardan Group, said: “We are honored to be part of “1 Billion Meals Endowment” campaign; a message of humanity and solidarity that supports the global endeavor to fight hunger as a major challenge to realizing the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
“The campaign and endowment fund represent the UAE’s deep understanding of sustainable humanitarian efforts role and significance in supporting underprivileged populations,” he added.

The Fight against Hunger
The “1 Billion Meals Endowment” campaign furthers UAE’s contribution towards the global endeavor to eradicate hunger, in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals for 2030. It also aligns with the country’s vision of institutionalizing and sustaining charity for the benefit of underprivileged communities. The planned sustainable food aid endowment fund is the UAE’s open invitation to the world to join forces to achieve food security and help create social stability around the world.

Donation Channels
The “1 Billion Meals Endowment” campaign continues to welcome donations and contributions to the endowment fund from institutions and individuals across five main channels including the campaign’s website (, as well as a dedicated call center via the toll free number (800 9999). Donations are also possible via bank transfers in the UAE dirham to the campaign bank account number with Emirates NBD (AE30 0260 0010 1533 3439 802). Donations via SMS give contributors the option to donate AED 1 daily through a monthly subscription, by sending the word “Meal” to 1020 for du users, or to 1110 for Etisalat by e& users. Those who wish to donate to the campaign through the DubaiNow app can do so by clicking on the “Donations” tab.

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Norway contributes $23.7 million of flexible funding to boost FAO’s capacity to respond to crises and emergencies

ROME,1st April, 2023 (WAM) – The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) has welcomed a $23.7 million contribution from the Government of Norway to scale up its response to the most severe humanitarian crises and emergencies. The contribution represents the largest single unearmarked funding of its kind to date.

The funds will be channelled through FAO’s Special Fund for Emergency and Rehabilitation Activities (SFERA), which is a funding mechanism with streamlined procedures to receive flexible contributions from donors and allocate them where and when they are most needed.

With this funding, FAO aims to reach around 600 000 food insecure people with farming inputs, livestock supplies, fishing inputs and cash assistance where needed. The contribution will focus on countries and people most in need under Humanitarian Response Plans, while having a strategic reserve to respond quickly to sudden onset emergencies.

“We would like to thank the Government of Norway for this generous and timely contribution which will enable us to provide rapid and at scale assistance to those in greatest need,” said Rein Paulsen, Director of the FAO Office of Emergencies and Resilience. “Norway’s partnership with FAO has always focused on empowering rural families affected by hunger to protect and restore their own food production. It is of utmost importance to prioritize smallholder agriculture as a strategic frontline humanitarian response.”

Through the SFERA 2022 contribution, Norway was also among the first countries to assist the earthquake-affected families in Türkiye and the Syrian Arab Republic. Assistance is also being delivered in Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Honduras, Mali, Mozambique and the Niger.

Under the 2023 humanitarian appeals, FAO requires $1.9 billion to assist 48 million people to restore local production and gain access to a steady supply of nutritious food, facilitate their recovery and lay the foundations for resilience to future shocks.

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