Hamad Al Sharqi: A 48-years legacy of giving – Emirates News Agency


Sun 18-09-2022 01:15 AM
FUJAIRAH, 17th September, 2022 (WAM) — The 18th of September marks the anniversary of H.H. Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Fujairah, assuming the rule of the Emirate of Fujairah, succeeding his late father, Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Abdullah Al Sharqi.
Sheikh Hamad carried on his father’s legacy of serving his country, building the nation and developing its foundations in all sectors, making the people and their prosperity his ultimate priority. This date constitutes an important national occasion in the history of the UAE and the Emirate of Fujairah; it tells a history full of dedication, giving and responsibility, and shows a track record full of local and global achievements that have contributed to strengthening the UAE’s position as one of the world’s most developed countries.
Since His Highness assumed the rule of the Emirate of Fujairah, it has taken rapid steps towards human and urban development, thanks to his wise vision, careful follow-up, and the firm will to implement development plans in the fields of economy, education, culture, construction and healthcare. His diligent work in planning and implementing development projects that put people first, made Fujairah into a fertile ground for economic investment, a destination open to culture and tourism, a land of natural and environmental wealth, and a leading city in terms of security, safety and stability.
A Father and A Leader The leadership style of His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah stems from a vision, which is a product of 50 years of wisdom drawing on the vision of the founding fathers of the Union, under the umbrella of national unity, and the principles of foreseeing a better future for the region, and putting people first to ensure a decent life for everyone who lives in the UAE.
Sheikh Hamad was keen to transfer this unitary extension and the national approach, and to consolidate it in the hearts of everyone around him; from members of society to the institutions that were created to serve the people. He harnessed all resources and capabilities to build a cohesive society whose members are aware and empowered, and contribute effectively to the development of the UAE, and achieving the vision of its loyal leaders and the wisdom of its early founders.
The Early Days H.H. Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi grew up with a passion for learning and knowledge. He learned the principles of leadership and methods of foresight, drawing on the unique personal traits of his late father, and the environment in which he was born and raised in Fujairah. He was raised on the values of perseverance, determination and ambition that knows no bounds or impossible. His father was keen that Sheikh Hamad obtains the necessary knowledge to develop his personality and secure his future, and so His Highness received his primary education at Al-Sabahiya School, the first regular school established in Fujairah. He then joined “London College” in the United Kingdom in 1967 to learn the English language in order to complete his higher studies. He subsequently studied at the Hendon Police College, then at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. After graduation, he returned home to stand by his father.
Sheikh Hamad was keen on overseeing the affairs of the emirate from an early age, and to engage in field work to develop the emerging region. When he was the Crown Prince, he was appointed Chief of Police and Security in Fujairah. Then, he worked as the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, as part of the first cabinet formation of the UAE Federal Government in 1971. Under the leadership of His Highness, the agricultural production projects and farmers’ support programmes increased as he focused on benefiting from international experiences to make the UAE’s agricultural and livestock development system successful.
After the death of his father in 1974, Sheikh Hamad took over as the Ruler of the Emirate of Fujairah. Since then, he has followed in his father’s footsteps in developing the emirate in all fields turning it to a hub for investment and a very distinctive tourist destination.
A New Era Over the course of 48 years, Fujairah has witnessed a series of development projects that serve vital sectors to meet the needs of the community. Since he became ruler, Sheikh Hamad has directed special attention to education, harnessing all possibilities and technical and human resources to form an integrated educational system that meets the needs of society. His Highness used to visit the schools in the Emirate and meet students and teachers, find out their needs, listen to their future aspirations, and honour outstanding students to encourage them to continue their efforts and achieving advanced academic levels. This was followed by a number of projects that support the educational process in Fujairah. In the year 2000, H.H. Sheikh Hamad opened the Higher Colleges of Technology – Women’s College, and the Higher Colleges of Technology – Fujairah Men’s College in 2005, the University of Fujairah in 2006, and established the Education and Academic Affairs Council within the structure of the local government of Fujairah in 2005, to support and advance the educational process in Fujairah. He also directed and supported building schools and other higher education institutions in different regions in Fujairah.
A Cultural and Arts Destination Powered by the belief of H.H. Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Fujairah, in the role of arts and culture in the development of society, Fujairah has become distinguished over the past decades with its exceptional initiatives that drive of art as the uniting and common ground of world nations.
Under the support and patronage of His Highness, Fujairah saw the launch of several international cultural and artistic projects; the first of which was the Fujairah International Monodrama Festival, one of the most important theatrical festivals in the world. It later expanded becoming the Fujairah International Arts Festival. In addition to that, Fujairah launched a number of Arab creativity awards, cultural competitions, and established entities that supported art and artists, such as the Fujairah Fine Arts Academy. All of these projects presented the Emirate of Fujairah to the world with its civilised image, and its creative intellectual and artistic treasures, bringing together people from around the world thanks to the vision of His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah and his belief in the value of cultural openness and sharing experiences.
People First Throughout his reign, Sheikh Hamad was the guiding father and the caring heart of his people. He was present at their occasions, sharing their joys and sorrows, celebrating their accomplishments and encouraging them to realise their dreams and aspirations. His Highness believed in the importance of developing and investing in human resources in order to effectively contribute to the nation-building process and achieve comprehensive development. His Highness also periodically visits citizens in their homes, accepts their invitations, takes care of their affairs, listens to them, and considers their living needs. He personally supervised many field and development projects in all regions of the Emirate, and followed the progress of work in them, directing, praising and encouraging, thus embodying the image of the leader who is always in the field, gaining knowledge about the interests of his country and people.
Sheikh Hamad took a remarkable humanitarian and paternal stance towards the families of the UAE’s martyrs from the UAE Armed Forces. On the occasion of Martyr’s Day, which was held in Wahat Al Karama in Abu Dhabi 2021, His Highness honoured a number of martyrs’ families with the “Medal of the Martyr” in appreciation of their heroism in the fields of chivalry and honour.
Safest City in the World In August, 2022, the Emirate of Fujairah ranked first internationally in the Numbeo Safety Index 2022 with a score of 93.23, ranking higher than 466 cities around the world. This achievement, made under the leadership of the Ruler of Fujairah, embodies the level of safety that citizens and residents enjoy in Fujairah. It also reflects the integration of efforts and the hard work of the security, police and community institutions made under the directives of His Highness, to ensure that Fujairah maintains the lowest regional crime rate and alarming accidents, according to the statistics of Fujairah Police; making Fujairah a preferred destination for living, stability and global investment.
Building and Development During the reign of H.H. Sheikh Hamad, many infrastructure and urban development projects emerged, which directly contributed to serving individuals, raising the quality of their lives and facilitating their movement between the various regions of the Emirate. His Highness directed the establishment and development of main and internal road network within the city and other Fujairah regions, and to provide them with the necessary services. Fujairah also made remarkable leaps in the urbanisation and construction sector; tall towers and buildings rose alongside the archaeological monuments and historical castles and forts that Fujairah is famous for. His Highness also directed to restore heritage houses, and ancient archaeological monuments and preserve their history and authenticity to highlight the civilisation of the place. These heritage sites receive visitors and tourists that are introduced to the rich history and culture of Fujairah and convey an image about the life of the people who lived in it throughout the centuries.
The pace of work has accelerated in utilising environmental resources and natural tourist sites that spread across Fujairah, including the investment of the picturesque scenery of its vast beaches and marine and mountainous sites and the establishment of more tourist facilities such as hotels, tourist resorts, recreational sites to provide unique experiences to residents and visitors. Fujairah is also famous for its land and marine reserves that contain unique biodiversity. The Government of Fujairah, following directives from His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah, has paid great attention to preserving them, including working on the “Fujairah Cultured Coral Reef Gardens” with the aim of protecting the marine environment, developing its resources and revitalising its tourism side.
In March 2022, Wadi Wurayah National Park, UAE’s first mountain nature reserve has been inscribed in the tentative list of nominations for UNESCO World Heritage Site status; a national achievement in the environmental work sector, which reflects the keenness of Fujairah government, represented by His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah, and in cooperation with the concerned entities, to highlight the biodiversity of the Emirate of Fujairah, and the great responsibility towards preserving its natural environments, which are rich in wildlife that directly contribute in maintaining the ecological balance in the region and the world.
An Internationally Acclaimed Economy Due to its strategic geographical location, the Emirate of Fujairah witnessed great economic activity in the field of petroleum industries and marine navigation. Many decrees were issued to establish huge economic institutions concerned with the development of the Emirate in this vital sector.
In 1982, the first Rock Wool factory in GCC was opened in Fujairah. Today, the factory ranks as the largest insulation materials company in the Middle East, and supplies countries around the world with insulation materials used in the construction sector. His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah also paid great attention to the mineral wealth and mining industries, as Fujairah is rich in stones and raw materials, and the proliferation of quarrying companies, which are now playing a pivotal role in supplying companies with building materials, and meeting the requirements of the global market, and its direct contribution to supporting the national economy and revitalising the real estate sector at the UAE level and abroad.
His Highness issued an Emiri decree in 1987 establishing the Fujairah Free Zone. The Zone has worked since that time together with the Port of Fujairah to promote economic activity in Fujairah, and attract foreign investments, which contributed to increasing the emirate’s GDP.
Moreover, the Ruler of Fujairah issued a decree establishing the Fujairah Petroleum Industries Zone (FOIZ) in 2011. Since its establishment, FOIZ has enhanced navigation, petroleum activity, oil and gas industries, and the establishment of economic and logistics projects in the field of petroleum industries. Today, Fujairah Port is the second largest bunkering hub in the world.
In 2012, H.H. Sheikh Hamad announced the project of oil export operations through the Abu Dhabi-Fujairah pipeline, in an important strategic step that reflects his vision to boost economic development. His Highness is also following the stages of work on the “Etihad Rail” project, which passes through the Emirate of Fujairah, and ensures providing all forms of support to help with the completion of the UAE’s largest land transport project, as a new global achievement for the country in the field of supply, transport and logistics services.
International Participation Since his work as Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah has been interested in personally learning about the experiences and practices followed around the world by attending conferences, summits and sharing experiences with other countries. After assuming the rule of Fujairah, His Highness made many official visits to leaders of world countries, and was also entrusted with the tasks of representing the UAE in foreign forums, heading the country’s delegation in conferences, seminars, and Gulf, Arab and international summits, and representing the then-President of the UAE, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, in official missions in various countries of the world. This was a clear indication of the wise government’s confidence in His Highness, and his personal characteristics with poise, wisdom and diplomacy, which highlighted the role of His Highness in strengthening international relations between the UAE and other countries.
Sports His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah’s interest in sports stems from a realisation of its importance and the extent of its impact as a lifestyle in people’s lives. His Highness has always supported sports clubs and encouraged athletes to train and participate in local, regional and international competitions and championships. In recent years, the sports sector in the Emirate of Fujairah has achieved remarkable qualitative leaps, and recorded global achievements and advanced positions achieved by Fujairah’s athletes in tournaments. Fujairah’s reputation has grown internationally in the field of organising international championships for various types of sports, including bodybuilding championships, mental sports, and the international marine championships organised by the Fujairah Marine Sports Club. His Highness has also supported the Fujairah Sports Club since its establishment, and in 2019 His Highness ordered the construction of the Dibba Al-Fujairah Sports Club Stadium at a cost of AED100 million.
Martial arts in the Emirate of Fujairah also achieved several records thanks to the support of His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah to organise Martial Arts tournaments, and to hold its global competitions in Fujairah throughout the year. These tournaments are organised and supervised by the Fujairah Martial Arts Club, which serves as a global platform for the participation of international sports clubs and teams and to attract athletes from around the world to compete in Fujairah.
Government Excellence In November 2021, H.H. Sheikh Hamad issued a decree establishing the “Fujairah Government Excellence Programme” based on his belief in the importance of developing performance in government institutions, and moving to an advanced level in improving the competencies of its employees, by establishing strategic partnerships between local departments and the private sector regionally and globally.
Health as an absolute priority The health and medical care sector has always been on the list of priorities to advance the standard of living in Fujairah. His Highness followed the development of medical services in the Emirate of Fujairah, and the establishment of hospitals that attracted the best medical cadres of different nationalities and provided their services to citizens and residents. Over the years, His Highness the Ruler of Fujairah visited hospitals, met with workers in medical institutions, and directed the provision of medical care equipment and supplies and their periodical upgrade. During the COVID-19 pandemic that swept the world, His Highness carefully followed the repercussions of the pandemic and the requirements to control it, and directed the recruitment of medical and technical cadres to contain the pandemic and preserve the safety of community members in cooperation with health institutions in the UAE. Under the patronage of His Highness, a number of examination and health care centres were opened to contain the fallout. With the support of His Highness, development projects in the health sector in Fujairah included the new expansion project in Fujairah Hospital, where new departments were established containing the best advanced medical devices to provide better health services to the community.
The Journey Continues..
The Emirate of Fujairah is still making major strides, under the wise leadership of His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi and thanks to his insightful planning and hard work, to make Fujairah a global city, within a country with global features and dimensions, offering exceptional models of development, and achieving record numbers in global indicators. Hands and hearts unite, and individual and institutional efforts are integrated to achieve a better future for the Emirate of Fujairah and the UAE.

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