The AgriTech Sector Development Team – a team comprising public and private-sector stakeholders from the UAE’s growing agricultural technology sector – convened for a workshop to explore proposed interventions to promote the adoption of technology in agricultural sub-sectors, with the objective of ensuring food security for current and future generations in the UAE. The team was formed with a mission in mind to propose legislations, policies, studies, and implementation plans to boost the adoption of technology-based food production in the UAE.
The team strives to promote the adoption of advanced and emerging technologies in every subdivision of the agriculture sector: aquaculture, fruits and vegetables, dairy and poultry, livestock, and industry and grains. It has clear objectives to determine the main obstacles standing in the way of introducing modern technology to each major agricultural sub-sector, and to propose solutions where we can intervene in these sectors to remove all hurdles. All interventions must adhere to two key criteria:
- They must cover all stages of the supply chain that are facing challenges or obstacles that limit the adoption of technology.
- They must undergo quantitative evaluation by addressing the gap against produce cost and imports, and measuring the improvement in the competitiveness of the local produce.
“The UAE’s wise leadership recognises the importance of enhancing local production enabled by technology to enhance the UAE’s food security.”Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri, Minister of State for Food and Water Security
Among the many interventions proposed during the workshop, a few stood out:
- AgTech Clusters, consisting of dedicated zones that provide abundance of space for implementing advanced agricultural technologies.
- Providing a low-credit financing and funding mechanism.
- Providing easy, safe and secure access over AgTech inputs using a one-stop-shop licensing service.
- Enhancing access over utility services, products and tariffs.
- Implementing quality standards.