UAE’s first conference on bio-security kicks off in Dubai

UAE’s first conference on bio-security kicks off in Dubai

Image 1DUBAI- The UAE Ministry of Environment and Water (MoEW) opened today (Monday, April 28, 2014), the country’s first conference on Bio-Security in Dubai.

The dynamic two-day event is expected to be attended by more than 120 participants from government and local authorities like the Ministry of Interior; Ministry of Higher Education; Ministry of Health; the Armed Forces; National Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Management Authority; The General Authority for the Security of Ports, Borders and Free Zones; the Federal Customs Authority; local environmental authorities; Municipalities and experts from international organizations like the World Health Organization (WHO); the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and universities from the United States of America and Canada.

The MoEW is organizing the conference as part of their collective efforts to implement the national strategy for Bio-Security as adopted by the UAE Cabinet of Ministers in 2013, which aims to establish an integrated Bio-Security system in the UAE and contribute to strengthening the country’s safety and security, which represents a fundamental pillar in UAE Vision 2021.

On this occasion,Dr. Rashid Ahmed Bin Fahad, Minister of Environment and Water, said that the UAE has maintained a strategic international and regional position across various sectors and is considered one of the main centers of global commerce and an important cross border for passengers and cargo transport–especially since the country will be hosting Expo 2020. This requires keeping up with the requirements of the control and monitoring of biological materials, which pushes the UAE to work in a full capacity for the application of the national strategy for Bio-Security, according to specified timeframes and international best practices for the development of national consciousness in response to these risks.

He added: “Strengthening the control of these procedures and their eventual responses will play an essential role in preventing risks while also reducing negative effects. The UAE National Strategy for Bio-security is based on three main areas–reducing the risk of biological agents, natural or human, deliberate or unintentional; building the capacity to detect the presence of biological risks and to deal with accidents of various kinds.”

He further added that: “the conference is an important platform for knowledge and expertise exchange in the Bio-Security segment. The significance of this pioneering event lies in focusing on the segment’s emerging issues, the identification of new challenges and the role of legislation in monitoring and evaluating these biological risks. It also plays an important role in strengthening the capacity and knowledge in the field of bio-security, and building a safe community in order to strengthen the international position of the UAE and to maintain the levels of social well-being of the residents”.

At the same time, a comprehensive review of legislation and laws related to Bio-Security in the UAE on both federal and local levels is currently being undertaken, in order to take the needed actions to develop and propose the necessary additional legislation in the light of the national and international developments.

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