A source of pride for all Arabs - GulfToday

A source of pride for all Arabs


Nassar Habashneh during the inauguration ceremony of Jordan Pavilion.

Nassar Habashneh, Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to the UAE, has commended the UAE’s efforts in organising and hosting Expo 2020 Dubai, which he described as a source of pride for all Arabs.

In a statement at the inauguration of the Jordan Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, Habashneh said that the event has amazed the world with the UAE’s enormous potential and immense capabilities in various aspects.

Habashneh reiterated that the countries participating in this important historical event embody the values of constructive collaboration between different nations worldwide.

“The event is a real opportunity to drive intellectual communication and foster a spirit of innovation and creativity among youth all over the world,” he said, adding that this global event is here to enable the exchange of ideas, cultures and opinions, in an environment of tolerance, love and brotherhood.

Habashneh stressed that the UAE, through Expo 2020 Dubai, wants to instil values of tolerance among different nations, with the UAE itself being home to more than 200 nationalities.

This diversity in people of different nationalities who have chosen to live and reside in the UAE reflects the country’s wise leadership keenness to spread the values of tolerance, coexistence, and human fraternity, ever since the establishment of the Union, he added.

Habashneh also praised the efforts of the Expo 2020 Dubai team, and their success in organising the spectacular opening ceremony, which reflects the esteemed status of the UAE and its ability to organise global events of such magnificence.

“The UAE, which rises to any challenge it faces, is always aspiring to be at the forefront,” Habashneh concluded.

Mountain ecosystems: Urgent action is needed to prioritise mountain ecosystems in order to protect them from the current climate crisis and empower mountain people to build resilient livelihoods, FAO Director-General QU Dongyu said at Expo 2020 Dubai.

The Director-General was speaking in a video message to the event ‘Reaching for the stars: Sustainable and climate resilient mountain development’, taking place as part of Expo 2020’s Climate and Biodiversity Week.

Mountains provide freshwater, regulate the climate and conserve biodiversity, while contributing to sustaining the livelihoods of 1.1 billion people living in mountains as well as many more living in the lowlands.

However, fragile mountain ecosystems and mountain communities are among the most vulnerable to climate change and land degradation, with some 346 million rural mountain people in developing countries at risk of hunger.

“The climate crisis is making mountains and mountain communities ever-more fragile,” Qu said. “They must be at the center of our decision-making processes. We need solutions and innovations that respect values, cultures and traditions.”

Qu called for collective actions to combat land degradation, adapt to climate change, strengthen agri-food value chains and promote economic development, which he said are fundamental to reducing food insecurity, alleviating poverty and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Director-General also pledged that FAO would help to scale up sustainable mountain development through the Mountain Partnership, by advocating for mountains in United Nations processes, promoting sustainable food systems in mountainous regions, and building local economies through the promotion of mountain products and services.

Co-curated by the Government of Italy, the Mountain Partnership Secretariat at FAO, and the Aga Khan Development Network, the daylong event examined ways to enhance the resilience of mountain communities, livelihoods and ecosystems to galvanize action in line with the SDGs.

The Mountain Partnership Products (MPP) Initiative is one of two FAO projects selected for Expo 2021 Dubai’s Global Best Practice Programme out of 1,175 submissions from around the world.

The Global Best Practice Programme showcases projects that have provided tangible solutions to the world’s biggest challenges, highlighting simple but effective initiatives that localize the SDGs and can be adapted, replicated and scaled to achieve an enhanced global impact.

With the backing of FAO and funded by the Italian Development Cooperation, the MPP Initiative is a certification and labelling scheme for traditional mountain products to strengthen the resilience of mountain peoples, their economies and their environments.

Currently, the initiative works across eight countries - Bolivia, India, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Nepal, Panama, Peru and the Philippines - and involves around 10 000 farmers, 60 percent of whom are women. Twenty products currently carry the MPP Initiative label, including a stingless bee honey from the Bolivian Andes and pink and purple rice cultivated by farmers in India’s Himalayas, as well as tea, coffee, pulses and textiles.

Mountain farmers and producers have seen sales increases of up to 49 percent, production increases of up to 40 percent, and selling prices increase by up to 25 percent as a result of the initiative.

A new phase of the initiative was recently approved by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, securing funding for the project until 2024 and expanding it to Pacific Small Island Developing States.

The MPP Initiative will be on display at Expo from 2 December 2021 to 2 January 2022.

Separately, the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) announced on Saturday, a special 6-day paid leave for all its employees across the Adnoc Group to enable them and their families to visit Expo 2020 Dubai, in line with the directives of the Abu Dhabi Government. The leave can be used at any time during Expo 2020, which runs from October 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022.

Adnoc granted this special leave to ensure its employees have the opportunity to explore the immersive cultural experiences, innovations, and solutions on display at the global event which is being held under the theme “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future”.

The company is keen for its employees to participate in and gain new insights and perspectives from this unique event which is bringing the world together in Dubai to shape a brighter and more prosperous future. Adnoc prioritises the health and wellbeing of its employees and is committed to creating an environment for them to thrive.

This 6-day leave supports the company’s broader initiatives aimed at enabling its employees to achieve a healthy work-life balance.


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