Emirati Women’s Day 2023: Celebrating the trailblazers driving sustainable growth

Emirati women leading the way in global competitiveness
Emirati Women’s Day 2023: Celebrating the trailblazers driving sustainable growth
Emirati Women's Day 2023

The UAE will celebrate the “Emirati Women’s Day” on Monday, 28th August 2023, which represents an annual national occasion to express pride in the outstanding achievements of Emirati woman and her pivotal role and distinguished contribution to the country’s renaissance and sustainable development.

The theme of this year’s Emirati Women’s Day, “We Collaborate for Tomorrow”, launched by Her Highness (H.H.) Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak (The Mother of the Nation), Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union (GWU), President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF), is in line with UAE’s 2023 theme “Today for Tomorrow” launched by President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and aims to highlight the UAE’s domestic efforts and its global contribution to addressing sustainability challenges by finding innovative solutions in the fields of energy and climate change.

With their unwavering dedication, Emirati women will continue to play a pivotal  role in driving sustainable growth for the future, establishing a legacy of lasting progress.

On this occasion, numerous prominent personalities have extended messages of congratulations, commending the remarkable efforts of Emirati women in their instrumental role of building a better tomorrow.

Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak

H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak (The Mother of the Nation), Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union (GWU), President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF), launched the National Strategy for Empowerment of Emirati Women in the UAE for the years 2023-2031, on the occasion of the Emirati Women’s Day 2023, under the theme of “We Collaborate for Tomorrow”.

Read more: Celebrating Emirati Women’s Day: Honoring the pillars of society

She added, “Emirati women have assumed a unique and prestigious position in all sectors of society, and the UAE has become a role model in the field of human development and indicators of global competitiveness, especially indicators of bridging the gender gap, which enabled the UAE, thanks to women empowerment policies, to rank first among Arab countries and 68th globally in global competitiveness indicators in 2022.”

Al Marri

UAE Minister of Economy, His Excellency Abdullah bin Touq Al Marri, highlighted the UAE’s pioneering experience in empowering women. He emphasized that the nation’s wise leadership provides unwavering support, driven by a deep belief in the crucial role of women as key partners in community development and as pillars of inclusive and sustainable growth.

“We commemorate Emirati Women’s Day (…) as this celebration highlights the remarkable accomplishments of Emirati women in the past five decades. These achievements demonstrate their indispensable role in bolstering the political, economic, and social leadership and progress of the nation, setting a strong foundation for the next 50 years.”

Al Marri added: “In today’s economic landscape, women contribute significantly, comprising approximately half of the workforce in the State. The World Economic Forum’s 2022 report highlights their strong and influential presence in emerging sectors of the economy. At the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center, women’s competencies and personnel account for 42 percent of the workforce, reflecting their vital role in the Center’s operations. Moreover, there has been notable progress in women’s representation on boards, with an increase from 3.5 percent in 2020 to 8.8 percent in 2022.”

Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri

Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, Minister of Climate Change and the Environment, said: “The launch of the National Strategy for Empowerment of Emirati Women strategy on Emirati Women’s Day, serves as a message of love, pride and recognition from the wise leadership of the achievements of the daughters of Zayed, and their important and vital role in the UAE development journey. The empowerment of women is a legacy inspired by the early efforts of our founding father, late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. The UAE’s wise leadership has followed the path, thanks to which Emirati women are living their brightest ages and are looking forward to further achievements in all fields.”

Almheiri added: “Emirati Women’s Day this year coincides with the Year of Sustainability and the UAE endeavour to host COP28 and provide the most inclusive and platform for all, including women, to bring about tangible change in the world’s response to climate change and move from climate pledges to implementation. Of course, Emirati women’s footprint will be present and will be instrumental during our global climate and environmental action.”

Al Zeyoudi

Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE minister of state for Foreign Trade, expressed admiration for the remarkable accomplishments of Emirati women, attributing their success to the visionary guidance of the nation’s leadership and unwavering support from Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, President of the General Women’s Federation, fondly known as “Umm Al Emirates.” He emphasized that the celebration of Emirati Women’s Day signifies the pivotal role played by women as essential partners in driving sustainable development and economic growth. These achievements stand as a testament to the empowering initiatives dedicated to Emirati women across various vital sectors.

Sarah Bint Yousif Al Amiri

Minister of State for Public Education and Advanced Technology, Her Excellency Sarah Bint Yousif Al Amiri, highlighted that the accomplishments and triumphs of Emirati women across various domains and regions stem from a foundation of support and encouragement. The wise leadership has played a crucial role over the past five decades, empowering women to actively contribute to the UAE’s progress, resilience, and prosperity. Emirati women have consistently served as essential partners in fostering growth.

Al Amiri expressed her pride in the UAE, highlighting the ongoing presence of Emirati women’s successes and achievements throughout the stages of societal development and renaissance. She emphasized that the nation remains committed to following the guidance of its wise leadership, which embraces a visionary outlook for the future, emphasizing research, development, and innovation.

In addition, she emphasized that Emirati society is rich with inspiring examples of women who play pivotal roles in the realm of advanced science and technology. Furthermore, she highlighted that approximately 56 percent of graduates from state universities in the UAE specialize in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.

Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi

On the occasion of Emirati Women’s Day, Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, president of the American University of Sharjah, said, “I am so proud of the resilience and remarkable achievements demonstrated by Emirati women, bringing us to this pivotal point in our journey. Thanks to their determination and the unwavering support of our leadership, they have paved the way for the next generation to transform their dreams into reality.”

She added: “Every Emirati woman plays a vital role in shaping the UAE’s trajectory. Women have limitless possibilities, and I encourage each and every one of them to realise their potential, no matter what field they choose, nothing is out of bounds. Creating a more sustainable world is at the core of what it means to be a woman. We are not only caregivers, but also the creators of energy and ideas.

Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed Al Nahyan

H.H. Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Zayed Higher Organisation for People of Determination, said that the Emirati Women’s Day’s primary goal is to honor the Emirati woman for her efforts and success in knowledge, and action and giving, and her access to the highest ranks.

“It is a special day and a great occasion to celebrate every woman in the UAE. It embodies the boundless aspiration of the Emirati woman for a better, more prosperous and advanced future. This comes under the auspices of the wise leadership that has paid great attention to supporting and empowering the woman to play her leading role in community service, created all elements for success, and provided her with a supportive environment and empowerment programs that drive her to demonstrate her creative and innovative energies, and to serve in the highest leadership positions in the state,” he said in a statement marking the occasion.

Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum

Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) and Member of the Dubai Council, said: “The Emirati woman is a symbol of creativity and has set a remarkable precedent in giving and achievement. She has secured leading roles in social, cultural, economic, and many other domains, thanks to our wise leadership’s support, recognition of her talents, and the significant role she plays in the nation’s progress. As a guide, nurturer of generations, and collaborator in the journey of excellence and societal development, she has channelled her energies towards serving her country, and her ambitions have manifested as significant accomplishments. She has attained global recognition, holding prominent leadership positions and fulfilling diverse responsibilities, playing a vital and dynamic role in sustainable development.”

Abdullah Sultan Al Owais

Besides, Abdullah Sultan Al Owais, Chairman of the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), affirmed the significant accomplishments of Emirati women across diverse sectors and fields. He emphasized their remarkable contributions to the UAE’s developmental journey, leaving indelible marks and inspiring success stories in every workplace. With unwavering support from the wise leadership of the State, which recognizes the capabilities of Emirati women, their advancement and growth have become integral pillars of the nation’s development, progress, and prosperity. Emirati women have emerged as inspiring role models, showcasing ambition, creativity, and a strong partnership in shaping a future of leadership and advancement.

Sahia Ahmad

In addition, Sahia Ahmad, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Regulatory Policy & Governance at Dubai’s Department of Economy & Tourism commented on the significant impact Emirati women have had on the city’s continued sectors. She stated “This year, as we do every year, we shed light on the meaningful and immeasurable achievements of Emirati women, as we all celebrate under the theme ‘We Collaborate for Tomorrow’. In a world marked by intense competition and swift global transformations, we continue to encourage and help empower Emirati  women to drive progress, innovation and excellence, setting our city and the nation on the path of continued success and global recognition.”

Laila Mohamed Suhail

Laila Mohamed Suhail, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Strategic Alliances and Partnerships Sector at Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism said: “The esteemed positions held by Emirati women in the country serve as an inspiration to women globally, a result of their substantial accomplishments and impactful contributions spanning all sectors. This success is a direct result of the unwavering support provided by our leadership, combined with their inherent capabilities and talents. The observance of Emirati Women’s Day with the theme ‘We Collaborate for Tomorrow’ underscores the approach the city fosters, involving all segments of society and entities to fulfil its aspirations.”

Additionally, Laila Mohamed Suhail further added, “Aligned with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, we at Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism are focussed on achieving the goal of the Dubai Economic Agenda, D33 to bolster Dubai’s standing as a preeminent global city in tourism and business. Emirati women, whose influence spans across various sectors, play an instrumental role in this pursuit.”

Moza Buti Alyouha

What’s more, Moza Buti Alyouha, Vice President of Brand and Event Marketing Operations at Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, affirmed the importance of Emirati women’s contributions and presence across a diverse array of sectors, notably tourism and the economy. “This prowess is nurtured by the steadfast support of our visionary leadership, which has empowered Emirati women to attain key positions and achieve excellence across domains, fostering creativity and mastery.”

Hoor Al Khaja

Similarly, Hoor Al Khaja, Associate Vice President of International Operations at Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, highlighted the global impact of Emirati women, stating, “Emirati women’s influence transcends national boundaries, extending to international forums. Emirati women’s imprint is not confined to the local level but resonates on the global stage, a testament to their dedication and diligence across sectors including tourism, economy, arts, and creativity. The UAE’s unwavering commitment showcases their comprehensive approach to the development of Emirati women, setting a path for the future generations to continue achieving and actively contributing across all sectors.”

Hoor Al Khaja added, “Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism is also devoted to realising strategic initiatives and programmes in line with the leadership’s vision, where Emirati women play a crucial role in achieving these goals, reinforcing their valued position.”

Aida Al Busaidy

In addition, Aida Al Busaidy, Associate Vice President of Consumer Advocacy at Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, hailed Emirati Women’s Day as a momentous occasion to celebrate the creativity and achievements of women. Also, she remarked, “In this ever-evolving global landscape, we take great pride in celebrating Emirati Women’s Day, as it is a testament to the remarkable achievements of our nation’s women.

Also, Al Busaidy said that women’s contributions, be it in the boardroom or in championing environmental causes, are a testament to their unwavering dedication to shaping a better world. The theme of this year’s Emirati Women’s Day, centered around sustainability, underscores not just progress but also the importance of stability. Our visionary leadership’s emphasis on women’s empowerment resonates strongly in this context, as we believe empowered women are the driving force behind a sustainable future.

Additionally, Al Busaidy added: “As we commemorate this special occasion, let us continue to stand together, nurturing a legacy that embodies the success and true spirit of Emirati women.”

Suhaila Ghubash

Moreover, Suhaila Ghubash, Executive Director at Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment, part of Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, highlighted Emirati women’s exceptional roles across all levels and sectors. Ghubash stressed that the daughter of the Emirates has made her mark in tourism, entertainment, events, festivals, and the economy, with their contributions integral to the successful realisation of Dubai’s and the UAE’s initiatives and projects, a testament to the unwavering support of the government. Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, alongside the Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment, actively engages women in numerous events, festivals, and initiatives throughout the year. This collaborative effort underscores the shared commitment towards achieving common goals.

Aishah Alyammahi

Also, Aishah Alyammahi, board advisor, Alef Education, extended heartfelt congratulations and blessings to Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak. 

In addition, Alyammahi also conveyed congratulations and greetings to the national women’s competencies and personnel on this special day, emphasizing Alef Education’s dedication to maintaining a supportive environment for Emirati women. She added: “Alef Education firmly believes in  women’s essential role in shaping the future of education.” 

Shafika Al Ameri

Expressing her views, Dr. Shafika Al Ameri, Chairman of the Emirati Enterpreneurs Associationhighlighted the significance of celebrating Emirati Women’s Day on August 28. This annual occasion serves as an opportunity to reflect upon the accomplishments and advancements made across diverse sectors. Al Ameri emphasized the ability of Emirati women to stand as true partners alongside men in the nation’s construction, development, and progress, working together to advance the UAE.

Furthermore, she stated that UAE women have achieved notable success, with 46 percent of leadership and supervisory positions held by them. They also account for approximately 72 percent of health-related jobs, 69 percent in the education sector, and 46 percent of administrative roles. Moreover, about 30 percent of foreign service posts and 34 percent of professional and specialized positions are occupied by women. The data released by relevant authorities also reveals that there are over 25,000 Emirati women entrepreneurs operating in the local and international markets. They own more than 50,000 business licenses and manage investments exceeding 60 billion dirhams. It is worth noting that the banking sector employs approximately 37.5 percent of women among its workforce.

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