نشرة فصلية إعلامية تصدر عن رابطة أصدقاء كمال جنبلاط
"بعضهم يستجدي الألم و يمتّع نفسه بالشقاء لكي يصل...
و لكن طريق الفرح هي أكمل و أجدى... كل شيء هو فرح... هو فرح

العدد 51

الخميس 01 تموز 2021

Abu Dhabi plans $6bn culture spending to diversify from oil

من الصحافة اخترنا لكم

Financial Times

Simeon Kerr 

Abu Dhabi is pledging to invest $6bn in the cultural and creative industries as the Gulf emirate seeks to increase its post-coronavirus stimulus spending and diversify away from oil.

Having already committed $2.3bn to projects in the sector, the government will over the next five years plough another $6bn into building museums, as well as making investments in sectors ranging from media, gaming and music to cultural heritage, architecture and the arts. “In terms of growth, we know creative industries are going to be a major contributor to GDP here in Abu Dhabi,” said Mohamed Al Mubarak, chair of the emirate’s department of culture and tourism, in an interview.

The oil-rich capital of the United Arab Emirates launched a separate $13.6bn stimulus package in 2019 to prepare the emirate for a post-oil future. It is accelerating diversification plans as it emerges from the coronavirus pandemic with a renewed focus on economic development.

A “substantial portion” of these new funds is earmarked for building cultural institutions on Abu Dhabi’s Saadiyat Island, already home to an outpost of the Louvre, a big tourist attraction.

The Zayed National Museum, showcasing the life of founding father Sheikh Zayed, is under construction. Preparatory work for the much-anticipated, long-delayed Guggenheim Abu Dhabi had been awarded, said Mubarak, with the main contract for the Frank Gehry-designed museum expected “soon”. Two other new museums are planned.

The cultural district is expected to be largely completed by 2025. It will include the Abrahamic Family House, a facility for interfaith dialogue comprising a mosque, church and synagogue.

With 20,000 people already employed in the creative and cultural sector, Abu Dhabi hopes that its investment in infrastructure and partnerships will create another 15,000 jobs over the next four years. At Yas Creative Hub, a new media zone with tenants such as CNN, there are plans to welcome 8,000 workers by the end of the year.

 Expanding the creative sector, while aiming to create jobs for nationals, will also require overseas talent. Abu Dhabi, along with other emirates, has launched a special visa to facilitate the entry of skilled workers.

Residents of Middle Eastern countries often complain about the difficulty in securing visas to the security-conscious UAE. But Mubarak said the authorities were liaising to work on a “seamless” process with rapid checks, as well as considering grants and other incentives to assist “every single income demographic” thrive in the expensive city. “If you are an artist, you will have the opportunity to flourish in the most economically effective way,” he said.

During the pandemic, the emirate invested $200m in film production, he said. About 1,000 people were involved in the filming of Mission Impossible 7 in the emirate earlier this year.

The oil-rich capital competes directly with Dubai, the country’s traditional hub for the creative industries. The capital has previously launched its own financial centre and technology start-up hub in competition with its oil-poor neighbour. But Mubarak said the creative industry “pie” was big enough for both cities.

He also shrugged off concerns about the impact of UAE’s tight restrictions on freedom of expression. He pointed to broader reforms including the granting of long-term visas and even nationality to some expatriates.

 “We are an evolving state that is evolving with our times,” he said. “We have already this year seen massive policy changes, so you can see how forward thinking we are becoming.”


الكاتب

Financial Times

مقالات أخرى للكاتب

العدد 48

الخميس 01 نيسان 2021

Pope and Grand Ayatollah join forces to condemn extremism

Financial Times


The historic visit of Pope Francis to Iraq this week was freighted with symbolism, designed to lift the morale of what he called a martyred church

العدد 47

الثلاثاء 02 آذار 2021

Venezuelans in Lebanon wonder which country is worse

Financial Times


Maria Issa misses Venezuela so much that the mother of two is even nostalgic about the time that her family was robbed at knifepoint

العدد 46

الإثنين 01 شباط 2021

Joe Biden will find ample potential for acrimony in the Middle East

Financial Times


In March 2010, then vice-president Joe Biden, a stalwart supporter of Israel, arrived in Jerusalem with a brief from President Barack Obama to try to revive moribund peace negotiations

العدد 43

الثلاثاء 03 تشرين الثاني 2020

Three strongmen and their battle for the Middle East

Financial Times


Vladimir Putin, Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Mohammed bin Salman have a lot in common. The Russian, Turkish and Saudi leaders are all nationalists with regional ambitions. They are autocrats who have centralised power and have been ruthless with domestic political opposition. And they are all risk-takers, who are happy to use military force.


شريط أخبار تويتر

شريط أخبار الفايسبوك