The remark was made during the dialogue session held by Sheikh Mansour within the activities of the Government summit in the presence of Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council, H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, a number of Sheikhs, ministers and senior officials.
Sheikh Mansour spoke about a number topics, including the Ministerial Council for Services, the UAE President’s Initiatives, heritage sports, foreign aid and changes experienced by some Arab countries under the “Arab Spring”.
He stressed the role of council in following up work in the service ministries whose functions are related to the daily life of citizens and residents alike, as well as discussion of initiatives and draft laws that would upgrade the ministerial services in terms of performance, implementation and development of the work mechanism.
Sheikh Mansour said the Ministerial Council for Services holds its meetings periodically, adding that the members discuss projects and initiatives each as per his ministry, then refer proposals to the Vice President to endorse them in line with the vision of the UAE President on achievement of happiness of citizens. He noted that the council in 2014 will focus on the two main sectors: education and health.
He noted that the Emirates Investment Authority (EIA) is an investment arm for the federal government. It seeks to achieve the greatest financial and economic returns to the state to achieve integration with other development projects and investments in important areas that private sector may be reluctant to invest, either because of low profitability or because of high risk.
Regarding the role of the EIA in support of the government’s budget, Sheikh Mansour said, “There is no doubt that the assets of the EIA, its investments and returns are the property of the federal government. If the general budget needs excess liquidity in the EIA, it is converted to the Ministry of Finance.” He indicated that the surplus funds from the budget of the federal government is invested through EIA.
Sheikh Mansour said there were five-year and 10-year plans to implement the UAE President’s initiatives, citing a number of accomplished projects with the aim of improving the living conditions of citizens. He also spoke of projects of building ports for fishermen at cost AED600 million.
He said that the Debt Settlement Fund settled in 2012 non-performing loans for 1500 citizens with total value of AED1.3 billion. In 2013, the loans of 2000 citizens, totaling AED2.05 billion were settled too.
Sheikh Mansour urged Emirati youth to work in private sector to benefit from their experiences and serve the country, citing a success story of Dr. Hawa Al Mansouri, who was dispatched abroad through the UAE President’s scholarship office of the Ministry of Presidential Affairs. He added that when she graduated she worked for the government sector “But she was surprised when we advised her to work for the private sector. She accepted.” Dr. Al Mansouri invented the catheter, which was patented. She became the first Emirati to get this patent. “We supported her project,” Sheikh Mansour said. .