The ruler of the Arab world’s most famous kingdom or emirate Dubai, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s dynamic and visionary leadership gave the emirate fame in the world of tourism and business. Mohammed bin Rashid inspired the whole Arab world championing human rights, civil rights, and more importantly women’s rights.
Today one may find numerous women office-bearers in the emirate. The vision of Mohammed bin Rashid inspired a whole race of women in the Arab world.
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri is one of the emerging women leadership names in the region. Arshi is Managing Director, Global Philanthropy and Charity, UK. A non – profit organization, committed to combating hunger, poverty, inequality, marginalization & advancing efforts into real development.
‘Global Philanthropy and Charity’ runs a number of global initiatives pledged to the UN SDGs Hunger & Poverty, Impact Investments (green tech, carbon control, renewable energy), Creativity & art, Vision for Green & global growth (via Sustainability and encouragement of green initiatives). In collaboration with businesses, government, nonprofits, institutions that are devoted & aligned to our efforts in propelling real societal impact.
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri is the CEO of ‘Trust With Trade Group’ as well. The group is headquarters in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, established as an independent and fully integrated international company across oil & gas, manufacturing, mining, waste management, Green and renewable Technology. Recently the group has diversified by investing in Edtech, Fintech, Block chain & biotechnology. Also as a start incubator, the ‘Trust with Trade’ group provisions the best for entrepreneurs in the early stages.
The Eastern Herald spoke with Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri about the role of women and their emergence as a power in the region.
— What is your role in women empowerment in UAE particularly and the Arab world generally?
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri: We are proud to live in the UAE, that prioritizes the empowerment of women as a part of the national agenda. His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, once said, ‘We have moved beyond the phase of empowering women. Indeed, we are empowering society itself through its women.”
Special mention to DEWA, Dubai which is one of the most prominent national organizations that support women in the energy sector, especially renewable and clean energy and sustainability. DEWA’s efforts in empowering society through women and enhances their participation in development sectors. It is one of the largest government organizations to employ women in technical positions within the energy sector across Dubai.
With 56 % of graduates in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) programs in the UAE being women, large technology companies are hosting events with female industry leaders to inspire and lead the way for other young women. Achieving equal opportunity for all in the workforce is an important moral principle and acts as a catalyst for other positive societal outcomes such as improved financial and physiological well-being.
Organizations with effective initiatives in place provide a useful blueprint for others to follow. Above all, we should remind ourselves that this is not about empowering one group over another. By paving the way for women to fully participate in the economy, nations will grow at a faster rate, ultimately benefiting society as a whole.
— How is Rashid bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai known as the person of the future?
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri: Our future lies within the choices we make today. Opportunities for substantive change rarely arise in most nations. UAE has charted a 100 year roadmap for itself, in the sectors of health, education, infrastructure, tourism, science, environment and achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, led by the vision of H. H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum,
Prime Minister of the UAE & Ruler of Dubai.
The UAE aims to establish the first inhabitable human settlement on Mars by 2117 and the project chartered today, enables the future generations to reap the benefits, driven by its passion to uncover a new knowledge. By 2024, the UAE will have developed a 100 % Emirati-made lunar rover and sent it to the moon, that shall study various aspects of the lunar surface and pave the way for discoveries that can contribute to the development of science and specialized high-precision technologies in the space sector.
From a combative political atmosphere, new positive forward thinking has emerged spearheaded by the rulers of the United Arab Emirates, whose vision is helping to co create a peaceful co-existence and connection, based on a shared belief in the unity of God found in both Judaism and Islam. The recent Abraham Accords between the UAE and Israel are a true testament towards a shared vision for peace and settlement.
This is because the UAE has a different kind of vision for its people, one which is an alternative, future-oriented model that supports moderate Islam, empowers women, embraces diversity, encourages innovation and welcomes global engagement.
— How do the new policies in Dubai impact the role of women in society?
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri: UAE as a country supports women to achieve parity backed by policy. The UAE is ranked as a leading country on equality in the region, in line with the vision of the Late Sheikh Zayed, Founding Father of the UAE. This achievement comes from the fundamental belief that women and men are equal partners in society. Through a series of public and private sector initiatives, women are playing an increasingly stronger role in business, military, and government.
In a world where women are still struggling to find equality, despite work opportunities and exposure to education, it’s commendable to witness that women in the UAE are treated equally and with respect at their workplace. Moreover, the UAE Cabinet approved the issuance of legislation that will ensure that women get equal salaries and opportunities, making the workplace a model of equality.
The UAE Cabinet in 2012 also made it compulsory for corporations and government agencies to include women on their boards of directors. Having female representation in board rooms makes sure that women are an integral part of this development and nation-building process, not just passive participants. Women occupy 66 % of public sector jobs, one of the highest proportions worldwide. 30 % occupy senior leadership positions associated with decision-making roles. The UAE Cabinet current comprises of 32 ministers out of which 9 are female.
UAE’s “100% Women Policy” aims to ensure that by 2021, 100 % of bilateral and multilateral foreign assistance will target or integrate equality and women’s empowerment as key components of the Ministry’s policy and programming. Women’s empowerment and equality is a key target in the UAE’s national strategy, aimed to be achieved by 2021.
— What Dubai is doing to challenge the western world?
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri: Creativity in face of Innovation is always pivotal for any nation. The UAE has always been working alongside the western world to prepare, to learn and to evolve with the ever-changing environments. Today, Innovations in the UAE fintech landscape include leveraging mobile devices and connectivity to make fiat and non-fiat payments a seamless, cashless experience, coupled with vast numbers of capital raised and the entry into the mainstream market of established fintech firms demonstrates the expansion and importance of the fintech sector. Blockchain & Cryptocurrencies is legally formalized. Notably, Abu Dhabi Global Markets (ADGM) introduced the Spot Crypto Asset Framework, making the ADGM a front-runner in regulating and welcoming blockchain and crypto asset-related businesses in the UAE. The new framework sets out a newly created regulated activity of operating a crypto asset business, where firms will be allowed to apply for a license to operate as a broker-dealer, an exchange and / or a crypto asset custodian.
E-commerce in UAE is here to stay, develop and grow. Market competition and technological innovation will continue to ensure this; think AI-driven virtual assistants and smart virtualization engines, virtual reality and augmented reality platforms enabling trying on clothes to suit your body shape or trying make-up or hairstyles all without leaving the house. The UAE shopper is among the top spenders online. In the wider Middle East, North Africa and South Asia (MENASA) region, the UAE represents the biggest annual spend per online shopper at approx $1,648.
— Why there are no many media outlets in Dubai? Will Dubai, in the future, welcome independent media and news outlets?
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri: Dubai Media City, Dubai Studio City and the International Media Production Zone(IMPZ) are three establishments have attracted a plethora of companies and freelancers in recent years.
Recently in 2021, the Dubai Media Council adopted the outlines of a comprehensive new development strategy to advance the emirate’s media sector with integration of technology.
The strategy will solidify the role of government communication within the federal authorities, reinstate the essence of partnership, cooperation and integration between national media authorities, curate partnerships with global media entities, manage the country’s reputation and its achievements within local and international media coverage, create a digital media environment that enables movement alongside rapid changes and interaction with the world.
— How will Dubai emerge again after an economic shift?
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri: The UAE government has undertaken massive steps to shift the focus of its economic growth to various other non-oil sectors, with manufacturing leading the way. Government-led focus on the manufacturing sector has fostered the growth of trade, export, national development and also contributed significantly to employment opportunities within the region. In line with the government’s vision of economic diversification and following the vision 2021 National Agenda, the UAE government is supporting the development of the manufacturing sector by focusing on creating national policies that promote sustainable growth, investments in education and strong global partnerships.
In June 2016, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai, launched Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030 to position Dubai into a global platform for knowledge-based, sustainable and innovation-focused businesses. Dubai Industrial Strategy is based on five key objectives that will serve as the foundation for Dubai’s industrial future. The Strategy aims to augment the total output and make Dubai a preferred manufacturing platform.
Absence of direct business taxation (excluding banks, oil companies and telecommunications operators) and direct income taxation, of exchange controls and of any limitations on the repatriation of capital, as well as the existence of a strong and profitable banking sector, plus a large pool of expatriate labor are the country’s undeniable assets to regain growth and economic activity.
— How will Dubai Astonish the world this time?
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri: Dubai will host World Expo in Dubai from October 2021 to March 2022. Expo 2020 Dubai shall host an extraordinary event that will celebrate humanity’s resilience and creativity including major technological advances in the fields of medicine and science.
Expo 2020 is the first World Expo to be held in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia region, and the largest ever event to take place in the region. The event shall welcome 192 countries, plus businesses, multilateral organizations and educational establishments.
Expo 2020 will be the fundamental meeting ground for entrepreneurs, innovators, company owners and global organizations and Interactions shall open massive opportunities for local business’s seeking a global connectivity, add value to a knowledge economy, and substantially contribute to a sustainable and bright future.
— What is your message to the African and Asian world?
Arshi Ayub Mohamed Zaveri: Asia and Africa are regions of colossal opportunities. The relationship of the UAE with Asia is strong and has got better during the pandemic. Also today, we witness deeper ties with sub-Saharan Africa with potential for greater trade and investments.
The UAE has one of the most liberal trade regimes in the Gulf and attracts strong capital flows from across the region. In common with most Gulf states, there are a high number of expatriate workers at all levels of the economy.
The present relationship shared with the Asian and African world is strong and the potential of it becoming even stronger is significant. Therefore, the overall outlook always requires participation, collaboration, and positivity.