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New Abu Dhabi Guide offers families and adventurers tips and tricks for desert outings

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ABU DHABI, 15th December, 2021 (WAM) — A new comprehensive guide is set to give aspiring desert adventurers everything they need to know about safely exploring and experiencing Abu Dhabi’s incredible outdoor landscapes.

The 35-page guide from the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi), entitled ‘Abu Dhabi Desert Guide,’ will assist desert-goers in exploring the emirate’s unique outdoor terrain with advice on camping activities, off-road driving, the location of hidden gem beauty spots and even traditional Emirati recipes that can be cooked on a campfire.

Available online, the guide offers readers tips and tricks ahead of their desert adventures, regardless of whether they are first-timers or experienced visitors. It also allows readers to retrace the stories and steps of the indigenous Bedouin people and unravel the history behind Emirati culture.

Saeed Al Dhaheri, Acting Tourism Products Development Director, DCT Abu Dhabi, said: "The Abu Dhabi desert is an exciting playground for families, friends and adventurers. The dunes offer a myriad of experiences, including thrilling adventures, nature watching and relaxing recreation, to suit all types of visitors. At DCT Abu Dhabi, we want everyone to learn about our emirate’s rich culture and learn more about how our Bedouin ancestors lived in the desert. Our new desert guide will help visitors with this experience, as well as giving them the confidence to explore the unique beauty of the region."

The opening section, Getting Ready for the Trip, details the preparations potential travellers should take before heading out. This includes useful information about vehicle checks, safety and emergency kits, clothing and camping checklists, with suggestions on where to purchase these items, as well as off-road driving regulations and emergency contacts.

For those wanting five-star camping or ‘glamping’ experiences, the guide offers ideas to elevate their outings. Suggested professional tour companies to ease first-timers into the desert lifestyle, such as the Jebel Hafit Desert Park and Arabian Nights Village, are included. The guide also recommends luxury accommodation among the dunes with the likes of Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara, Al Wathba Luxury Collection Desert Resort & Spa and Telal Resort Al Ain.

For off-road enthusiasts, six routes suitable for various levels of desert driving experience are listed, all of which offer amazing scenic vistas and interest points. Across the routes, drivers will have a chance to see native deer roaming around Telal Nature Reserve or the salt pools at Liwa crossing. Other breathtaking attractions highlighted include Al Wathba Fossil Dunes, Al Wathba Wetlands Reserve, Jebel Hafit Desert Park and Al Sadeem Observatory.

After setting up camp in the desert, readers can turn to the section on Emirati cuisine, with traditional recipes adapted for the campfire such as chicken machboos and Umm Ali, as well as simpler dishes that can be cooked over an open fire.

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Emirates

Dubai Mercantile Exchange gained oil producer confidence, consolidated its position as region’s most reliable source of oil pricing: Maktoum bin Mohammed

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DUBAI, 25th January, 2022 (WAM) — H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, affirmed that the Dubai government provided all support needed for the growth of the financial markets operating in the Emirate through developing legislatives framework and infrastructure to allow exchanges to consolidate their presence regionally and globally.

Sheikh Maktoum added that Dubai Mercantile Exchange (DME) was able to gain the confidence of major oil producers and consolidate its position as the most reliable source of oil pricing in the region.

During the meeting, Sheikh Maktoum praised the achievements of DME during the last stage, marking that the successful exchange strategy contributed in the growth of trading volume and enhanced its ability to benefit from the steady growth of crude oil trading in the Middle East and Asia regions.

H.H. Sheikh Maktoum reviewed with the DME board of directors the latest regional and global developments in the sector, especially during the rapid changes experienced by the energy market, and the great growth opportunities that it holds.

Also, Sheikh Maktoum reviewed the qualitative achievements of DME during the last period, as the number of companies using the exchange platform for physical delivery reached 60 companies, and the number of barrels of oil delivered through the DME mechanism reached 2.5 billion barrels. An equivalent of 17 billion barrels was traded, while the number of barrels of oil that are priced according to the Oman Crude Oil Futures Contract on a daily basis is 5.2 million barrels.

DME lists the Oman Crude Oil Futures Contract (DME Oman) as its flagship contract, providing the most fair and transparent crude oil benchmark for the region. DME Oman is the explicit and sole benchmark for about 170 million barrels of crude oil per month since 2018, after it was limited to pricing about 30 million barrels per month.

The meeting was attended by Ahmad Sharaf, Chairman and Dubai Holding independent rep.; Nasser Al Jashmi, Secretary-General of Oman's Ministry of Finance; Abdullah Al Harthy, Under-Secretary of Oman's Ministry of Finance, Derek Sammann, Senior Managing Director and Global Head of Commodities, Options and International Markets, CME Group, and Raid Al Salami, DME Managing Director.

DME Oman is pricing more than 170 million barrels of crude oil per month since 2018 compared to around 30 million barrel per month prior to Saudi, Kuwait and Bahrain switch. The contract is regarded as the most reliable crude oil futures price benchmark, due to the quality of Oman Blend, which represents the majority of the GCC crude oil grades.

DME is the first operator of international energy futures and commodities exchange in the Middle East. The company focuses on bringing fair and transparent price discovery and efficient risk management regulated by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and is a recognised body by the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) thus, addresses the growing market need for price discovery of sour crude oil.

DME is a joint venture between Dubai Holding, Oman Investment Authority and CME Group. In addition to its core shareholders, global financial institutions and energy trading firms such as Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Shell, and Vitol have taken equity stakes in DME, providing the exchange with a resounding vote of confidence by major players in global energy markets.

DME is located within the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), a financial free zone designed to promote financial services within the UAE. DME is regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority and all trades executed on DME are cleared through and guaranteed by CME Clearing. CME is regulated by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and is a Recognised Body by the DFSA.

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Emirates

Mansour bin Zayed chairs Mubadala Investment Company board meeting

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ABU DHABI, 25th January, 2022 (WAM) — H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, and Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Mubadala Investment Company, chaired the meeting of the Executive Committee of the company’s board, at Qasr Al Watan in Abu Dhabi.

The committee approved the company's work plan and the annual budget for 2022.

The committee also reviewed the work of the board’s sub-committees during the past year and discussed several topics on the agenda and took appropriate decisions in this regard.

The meeting was attended by Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure; Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Bowardi, Minister of State for Defence Affairs; Abdulhamid M. Saeed; and Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Affairs Authority (EAA) and Managing Director of the company.

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Emirates

Khalifa bin Zayed issues new family business ownership governance law

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ABU DHABI, 25th January, 2022 (WAM) — In his capacity as Ruler of Abu Dhabi, President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has issued a new family business ownership governance law that further strengthens the sector’s contribution to the economy and facilitates the transition to successive generations.

The new law aims to further enhance the family-owned business legislative ecosystem by adopting a more flexible and sustainable economic model, in line with best international governance practices. The law also aims to boost family businesses’ contribution to the diversification and growth of the economy.

The new family business ownership governance law empowers owners of family business to: prevent selling of shares or dividends to individuals or companies outside the family, and to require prior approval from family partners before a shareholder sells their respective equity stake to a non-family member.

Owners of family businesses can also issue family-owned shares with weighted voting rights and prevent the pledging of family-owned businesses as encumbered assets, to avoid expropriation.

The current law is not applicable to family-owned businesses where non-family members own more than 40 per cent of shares.

The provisions of this law are applied to family-owned businesses on an opt-in basis for owners or co-founders by submitting a request to the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED), which will issue the executive and administrative regulations of the new law from March 2022.

Commenting on the new law, Mohamed Ali Al Shorafa, Chairman of ADDED, said, "This law is a major pillar in enhancing the vital role played by these businesses in driving economic development. It also provides a legislative framework to ensure the growth and sustainability of family-owned companies in line with the evolving business sector, since it allows ownership by non-family members up to 40 per cent of the capital. This will support the expansion and development of family-owned businesses."

He added, "Family-owned businesses in Abu Dhabi continue to contribute to economic diversification and the knowledge-based economy, equipped with decades-long experience in the market, strong resilience, and experience in partnering with government entities, as well as investing in sectors targeted by strategic initiatives launched by the emirate of Abu Dhabi."

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