HE Rashed Mohamed Al Shariqi, Director General of Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA) stressed the need for keeping pace with the latest trends and challenges in the field of agriculture and food safety and all other related areas. He also called for serious efforts to meet the needs outlined in the government plans for sustainable development and people's well being.
Al Shariqi emphasized the importance of developing legislative tools in order to strengthen the laws of governance and to guarantee their execution in an ideal manner towards the desired objectives. "The wise government spares no efforts in the way of improved government performance so as to meet the needs of globalization, changing commercial dynamics and international relations. This is in addition to the need for regional coordination towards becoming one of the best performing governments in the world," he explained.
The statement of the Director General came during a workshop on "Assessing the Legislative Impact" organized by ADFCA recently at Beach Rotana Hotel in Abu Dhabi. Attended by senior officials, representatives from GCC countries and a host of international experts from the US, Ireland, Germany, the Organization of Global Economic Cooperation and Development and ADFCA staff, the workshop discussed the best practices in pioneering countries in implementing legislative mechanisms and the methodologies followed in this regard. The workshop also deliberated upon the impact of the legislative measures in improving government outcomes in those countries in the areas of food safety, agricultural economy and sustainable development.
Al Shariqi opened the workshop and pointed out that the concerned authorities expended massive efforts to prepare policies and legislations covering diverse aspects of government work in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, which constituted the integrated legal framework and administrative apparatus that impacted substantially and positively upon the economic and social renaissance the country is experiencing.
He also pointed out that the mechanism for assessing the impact of legislations is the one most reliably adopted in developed countries, be it for studying proposals for new laws or for evaluating the effect of laws already implemented or for updating policies and legislations because they were based on the latest scientific knowledge on the subject.
Al Shariqi drew attention to the fact that the greatest benefit that accrues from assessing the impact of legislation is the flexibility it brings to the arena of legislation and the ease of implementation in the commercial sector at all levels and across the all other beneficiaries of policies and legislations. "It also guarantees incorporation of the views of all stake holders without compromising on the fundamental objectives behind the legislation, ultimately leading to a better knowledge-economy, towards which the government strives," he explained.
HE Dr. Mariam Hareb Al Yousuf, Executive Director of Policy and Regulation at ADFCA, stressed the importance of the subject of the workshop in updating and evaluating policies and legislations that ADFCA issues. In a presentation, HE gave a historical outline of the origin and development of policy and legislation development at ADFCA and the achievement thereof.
A number of papers were presented on the topic by participating experts, followed by interventions from the audience. The workshop concluded with a practical implementation of the suggested mechanism on the food law for the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and a discussion on the directive plans for the operationalization of the mechanism, including its protocols.
The recommendations of the workshops were ratified, focusing on the importance of adopting the mechanism at all the levels of the legislative infrastructure and providing technical and official support to make it an essential part of the policy and legislation development in future. The recommendations included the proposal to implement the mechanism on a experimental manner at the beginning in order to ensure full preparedness.
The recommendations also underlined the need for strengthening outreach to and consultation with all the government stake holders and the participation of the private sector with joint working groups so as to increase the confidence between the two sides and to raise awareness.