The meeting, which was held in the agency’s headquarters in Abu Dhabi, was led by Dr. Mohammad Nasser Al Ahbabi, Director General of the UAE Space Agency. Representatives and experts from the relevant UAE stakeholders were also in attendance.
In that context, Dr. Al Ahbabi said that the working group was conceived as a temporary group which would discuss common goals, responsibilities and prerogatives for all interested parties in order to identify suitable priorities to implement government directives. Likewise, the group will work towards encouraging cooperation and coordination between the various stakeholders for the space sector inside the UAE.
The group identified several important topics to review during its meeting, including the goals of space sector development and setting up organisational frameworks which will apply to space related activities in the UAE. It noted that understanding local and international trends in the industry would contribute to the strategic development of a successful UAE space sector and would therefore support the growth and prosperity of the UAE.
Dr. Al Ahbabi went on to say that the formation of the working group, with real participation from its members, would ensure that the aspirations of all sides were accomplished.
He highlighted that the most important issue on the agenda for the working group is a discussion of Emirati human capital in the space industry and how to improve the current capacity of the UAE in the sector. That will require identifying capacity gaps and working to resolve them through the development of methodical paths and processes to empower, educate and train Emiratis in the space technology industry. Through investments in training programs introduced by local academic institutions, and with the cooperation of international academic and research institutes with proven excellence in the field, the UAE will develop the domestic human capital necessary for a successful space program.
The remit of the UAE Space Agency includes developing the framework for the space sector and defining national goals and policies for space. The agency will work towards fulfilling government directives in the sector as well as offering guidance and direction for industry and academia in this vital field. The agency will define the legal authority to direct the activities, organizational requirements and range of responsibilities for all space sector stakeholders. The regulations will specify the procedures, mechanisms and organizational standards of the space sector, as well as the working fees of the industry.