His Excellency Dr. Rashid Ahmed Bin Fahad, Minister of Environment and Water, has issued Ministerial Decree No. 574 of the year 2015, which covers new regulations on the use of fishing nets. Under the new decree, fishermen who are duly registered with the Ministry and whose boats are also registered as ‘cruisers,’ will be allowed to catch surface fish via the use of casting and fishing nets. The move demonstrates the Ministry’s continuing commitment towards the further promotion of food safety; the sustainability of domestic production and the preservation of marine environment—thereby ensuring the sustainability of marine aquatic resources, which is one of the strategic objectives set in UAE Vision 2021.

The Ministry of Environment and Water held recently a meeting with representatives from all seven emirates to discuss current and future waste treatment projects and initiatives in line with the UAE’s target of treating 75 per cent of its total waste by 2021. Eng. Youssif Al-Ahmad Al Rayssi, Director of the Ministry’s Waste Management Department, led the gathering attended by various government delegates and stakeholders.

The Ministry of Environment and Water, represented by its Health and Agricultural Development and Management Department, successfully organized an introductory workshop aimed towards increasing awareness on the new regulations and standards for wood packaging in international trade. The sessions was participated in by staff of various shipping companies and was held in the presence of Engineer Abdullah Al Mansouri, Head of the Plant Health Section Department, Ministry of Environment and Water.

The Ministry of Environment and Water recently conducted a workshop for the Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA) covering the key guidelines and procedures in inspecting fishery facilities in the UAE. During the workshop, His Excellency Engineer Saif Mohammed Al-Shara, Assistant Undersecretary for External Audit sector, Ministry of Environment and Water, stressed on the importance of abiding and complying with the set standards and regulations on environmental protection. The event was held in line with the efforts to reinforce national capacities at the local level related to the procedures and requirements for inspection and checking of fishery facilities, to protect marine life, maintain and develop living aquatic resources and strengthen the country's food security initiatives.

The Ministry of Environment and Water has implemented 18 technical training courses for more than 160 qualified doctors and agronomists in 22 quarries across the country at the start of 2015. The program is in line with the Ministry’s strategic efforts to ensure the prevention of agricultural pests and infectious animal diseases as well as the development of high-quality, efficient and transparent services. This is being done through the rehabilitation of veterinary and quarantine measures to ensure a more streamlined, accelerated and superior approach.