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Future key for reviving Arab civilization - UAE vice-pres.

Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum

Future key for reviving Arab civilization - UAE vice-pres.


DUBAI-- In order for the Arab civilisation to regain its past glories, the Arab world should begin by comprehending the indicators for the future, said Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

In statements made while addressing a panel of the World Government Summit and carried by the UAE news agency (WAM), Sheikh Mohammad referred to a "clear message' he made to the Arab governments 12 years ago that "you must change, or you will be changed." "As we talk about reviving civilisation, we need hope. I am optimistic because it is the man who makes civilisation, economy and prosperity. If the Arab and Muslim man succeeded in building a civilisation in the past, they are capable of resuming it," he added.

He added that the Arab world possesses all potential, including human resources, education, fertile lands and will power.

"The only thing missing is the management. The management of governments, economy, resources, infrastructure and even management of sports. We are 300 million, almost equal to the population of the United States, but look how many medals they win in the Olympic Games. We have failures in certain areas that need to be addressed." Sheikh Mohammad said the UAE has no recipe for success, but to endeavor, learn, gain expertise and importantly, appreciate the value of time.

"We do not boast perfection. We still learn every day and we waste no time because for us, time is like a running river. The experiment of the UAE speaks for itself for whoever wants to emulate it. All I can say is that we have advanced qualities in leadership and management," he said.

He applauded the progress of the Gulf Cooperation Council under the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdul Aziz and other leaders. He, however called for not pursuing the dream of 'Arab Common Market." "It is an old dream. The (Arab) commerce ministers are still dreaming of the Arab Common Market. the world has changed and became a Common Global Market. I tell them, it is time to leave that 70s rhetoric behind you and open to the world. Why should I open to neighbours in the time of cross-border trade." He gave the UAE national carriers as example by saying: "Our planes today carry passengers to China and Brazil. Other planes serve 260 airports around the world. Tourists come from everywhere. Trade is open. We currently have confirmed plane orders for a total value of AEd 100 billion. Today, the world is open. We take goods from China and import them to the Americas and Africa." Sheikh Mohammad also spoke about corruption, saying it is the root cause for failure of governments and states.

"In some countries, you can feel see corruption from the moment you set foot on the airport. It has the order of the day in those countries, but in the UAE, I promise you, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and I, will never tolerate corruption. We are responsible before Allah the Almighty and before our people that no mistake will go unpunished."


Copyright 2007