Public-Private Partnerships for Empowering Emirati Youth

IN THE NEWS

By His Excellency Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair, Chairman of the Board of Trustees

The Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education

The partnership between the public and private sector can prepare qualified cadres and national talent through a PPP model that could become a unique and inspiring Emirati best practice, regionally and globally. One example of this is the partnership between the Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education and the Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratisation in the UAE.

At a time when the global economy is witnessing rapid and continuous growth in size and capacity, many countries are keen to keep pace with rapid economic transformation by focusing on competence-building and skill development of their biggest asset: people. This is aligned with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by the United Nations Member States. A critical priority development area is: providing quality education, employment opportunities, economic growth, building sustainable communities and forging partnerships to achieve these desired goals.

The wise leadership of the UAE has adopted a pioneering approach in anticipating the future and preparing for the dramatic shifts that will be seen in vital sectors such as education and employment in the third millennium. The UAE Vision 2021 and the UAE’s national agendas have all targeted achieving a high-quality educational system, building a sustainable and diversified economy and consolidating human development pillars in order to build a more developed society and enable youth to get experience in various fields of work to acquire an integrated set of skills and leadership traits.

This strategic vision has made the UAE a model for development. In 2018, it was ranked first in the Arab world and 34 in the world out of 189 countries, rising in 8 ranks from than 2017, as shown in a report issued by the UN in September 2018.

Public-private partnerships will support the UAE goals and agenda for future generations.  The UAE Centennial 2071 vision is based on four aspects: Education, economy, government development, and community happiness. PPPs must be strengthened to achieve these goals,  especially in education, skill development, technology, and the applications of artificial intelligence. The rapid change of the economy and changing nature of the careers and the government of the future, require us to equip our youth with much-needed experience, knowledge and leadership skills.

The private sector must join forces in empowering Emirati youth and helping them expand their education and career choices. They have social responsibility in harnessing their institutional capacity to serve, educate, train and rehabilitate youth. Preparing the future generations with the necessary tools and skill sets is key for them to enter new professional sectors and foster an advanced work culture that keeps pace with rapid educational and economic changes. Using intelligent and continuous learning, electronic and specialized training, and simulation and virtual reality will give our youth a wider range of career prospects, especially in the private sector, entrepreneurship and innovative projects.

In this context, there are many opportunities for private sector institutions in the UAE to launch tailor-made programs for the UAE youth to develop their work culture, enhance their skills and abilities, and prepare them for the opportunities of the new careers in the various disciplines of the knowledge-innovation based future economy.

Today, the partnership between public-private sectors in empowering national competencies can became an inspiring and unique model, both regionally and globally, as is the case in the partnership between the Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratization and Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education within the Al Ghurair Young Thinkers Program, which is aimed at empowering UAE youth to expand their range of opportunities for education and employment choices. This partnership constitutes a first of several future partnerships between the Foundation and various stakeholders keen to support successful pilot projects in the UAE.

These partnerships play a vital role in achieving sustainable development, enhancing the position of the UAE in terms of global competitiveness and forming benchmarking partnerships in digital transformation, national innovation strategy, e-government and smart government, UAE vision for the future, and other vital areas. All this reflects the continuous effort of the UAE leadership in taking initiatives to achieve sustainable development.

In conclusion, these efforts promise to deliver high-quality strategic results in preparing a national human capital capable of adapting to change in the various economic sectors, enhancing the competitiveness of the country, and preparing youth to achieve the educational and employment success. Accomplishing these goals is key to achieve the vision that the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, may God rest his soul, had for the UAE. The late Sheikh Zayed set the foundations and moral values of a modern developed nation by investing in education, supporting the youth and promoting development in all sectors, placing the UAE on the right track to becoming an inspiring success story.

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