His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority, has highlighted the importance of regulating agricultural practices and standard operating procedures as a key step towards ensuring the sector's sustainability, enhancing the food ecosystem and achieving food security strategic goals.
Mansour bin Zayed said: "The decision to register agricultural land lease contracts in Abu Dhabi complements the sector's legislative infrastructure, ensuring the optimal use of farms, enhancing agricultural and livestock production, and boosting the income of farm owners." His Highness added: "Supporting the sector's legislative infrastructure will encourage investment in agriculture and food production and, therefore, develop the food ecosystem and supply chains by supporting local agricultural production and enhancing its competitiveness."
He commended the efforts of both Department of Municipalities and Transport (DMT) and Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA), in addition to all relevant local and federal stakeholders, in supporting the development of agriculture and livestock production in Abu Dhabi. HH emphasized the importance of collaboration among the competent authorities to support comprehensive development processes in Abu Dhabi as a key milestone to build a knowledge-based sustainable economy and optimize non-oil revenues and contribution to gross domestic product (GDP).
DMT has issued decision No. 85-2021 to register agricultural land leases in Abu Dhabi. Each respective municipality will register farm leases, in accordance with applicable laws and regulations, after meeting the necessary requirements. The lessee should be a legal entity and the farm should be used in line with approved agricultural activities, specified by ADAFSA. The lease should also be approved by ADAFSA after settling the applicable fees and charges.
HE Falah Al Ahbabi, Chairman of DMT, extended his gratitude to the UAE leadership for their continuous support and follow-up to develop a solid and comprehensive national ecosystem, adding: "The UAE leadership's food security vision is setting an example in contributing to a sustainable agricultural sector through introducing innovative solutions to sustain food production using advanced technologies that will develop local agricultural production and supply chains and therefore support our national strategic food stockpile."
HE Falah Al Ahbabi said developing further investment mechanisms in agriculture would contribute to increasing operational effectiveness and ensuring resources sustainability. He added that this approach was a key component of DMT's strategy to optimize the use of agricultural assets, in cooperation with all relevant stakeholders, and regulate farming investment and agricultural land leases as per sustainable development international best practices.
H.E. Saeed Al Bahri Salem Al Ameri, Director General of ADAFSA, said: "The decision to register farm leases is an important milestone to diversify revenues generated from agriculture, increase the income of farm owners and livestock breeders and optimize the use of agricultural lands." He added: "The decision will also contribute to attracting more investments in the agricultural sector and enabling owners to outsource development of farms to qualified investors through legally registered and certified contracts that will protect the rights of contracting parties." He concluded: "This decision is a key step to optimize the agricultural resources and serve the goals of ensuring food security and a sustainable agricultural sector."