Time magazine – the long running popular US-based publication has named our very own Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, as among its 100 Most Influential People of 2019.
The annual list picked the personalities under four categories: leaders, pioneers, artists and icons.
Sheikh Al Nahyan joined fellow leaders US President Donald Trump, Pope Francis, Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan, China’s Xi Jinping and New Zealand’s prime minister Jacinda Ardern, among others in the prestigious list.
The accompanying editorial describes the UAE leader as a “long-term thinker” before adding that “the firm belief that the benefits outweigh the cost compels him onward” pertaining to his tough, and sometimes controversial, foreign policies.
We at Abu Dhabi Talking feel that this latest honour is well deserved considering the many achievements and positive initiatives Sheikh Al Nahyan had and continues to implement to boost not just Abu Dhabi but the UAE’s profile globally .
So to celebrate this feat, we list down why Abu Dhabi’s crown prince is one of the best among today’s leaders…
The UAE has always believed in the values of tolerance, opening its doors to different nationalities to work and live here as encouraged by the country’s founding father, Sheikh Zayed.
And with 2019 being the Year of Tolerance, Sheikh Al Nahyan stepped the ante through a number of initiatives.
He personally invited Pope Francis to the UAE, paving the way for the first visit of the head of the Catholic Church In February here in the country – a historic moment reaffirming the country’s commitment to respect different religious affiliations.
Another was the world-class hosting of the country of the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 in March. The global sporting event celebrates people with disabilities by highlighting their skills and capabilities. It symbolises the UAE’s pledge to support people with special needs by involving them in the community.
With eyes looking at the future, the capital finds itself at the centre of innovation and fast changing technology.
Under the guidance of Sheikh Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi has seen an increase in cutting-edge projects including digitalisation of government and public services.
Exciting projects coming up include the Hyperloop that will connect Abu Dhabi and Dubai through a high-speed train system and the building of a space tourism airport in Al Ain.
A handful of competitions and grant programmes are also being launched to cultivate bright ideas and future innovations. There’s also a lot of attention to emerging technology such as AI (artificial intelligence) to be implemented in various aspects of life here. The country is also a staunch supporter of caring for the environment through various initiatives such as advancing the use of alternative energy and implementing programmes to take care of its natural resources.
While there’s a conscious effort to move forward, the leadership is all about conserving local culture and traditions for residents and tourists to experience.
This is evident with the increase of cultural programmes and activities, new venues that carries historical significance and reopening of old landmarks.
But more than just fostering local culture, Abu Dhabi has become a hub for international art too, giving residents an opportunity to see works from different artists from around the world and from various eras.