By Sarah Townsend
Ruler of Dubai says more work to be done as he sets up teams to execute National Agenda 2021
Dubai’s economy has doubled in a decade but there remains further progress to be made in education, health, housing and a range of other indicators, according to Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
In a rare post on LinkedIn on Saturday, Sheikh Mohammed said that 62 percent of the UAE’s 52 national performance indicators had been achieved, and that new government teams are being set up to ensure the remaining indicators are met by 2021.
Sheikh Mohammed said the UAE had made some outstanding progress to date. “Our work together across all sectors has been tireless,” he wrote, noting that the economy has doubled in the past ten years from AED663 billion ($180.5bn) of GDP to AED1.36 trillion ($370bn).
The UAE has also made substantial progress in diversifying its economy away from dependence on oil, resulting in an increase in non-petroleum exports from AED113 billion ten years ago to AED603 billion this year, and a rise in the economic contribution of the non-oil sector to GDP from 66 percent to 77 percent today.
“This has provided our economy with considerable protection throughout the recent decline in oil prices and meant we have been one of few countries worldwide cushioned against the resultant economic slowdown,” Sheikh Mohammed said.
He said the UAE leads the Middle East in “more than 100 development indicators”, for example, on quality of public infrastructure, roads, maritime and aviation facilities, as well as public safety and security, rate of female enrolment in universities, government efficiency and trust in the government, among other indicators.
However, he said that more work needs to be done to fulfil the targets set out in the UAE’s National Agenda, and announced the issuance of a directive to form state “National Agenda Execution Teams” to build on existing efforts.
The teams are to comprise 550 officials from all government sectors and departments, and report to Sheikh Mohammed.
The Ruler wrote: “A few years ago, we announced the  indicators for our National Agenda…which we aim at achieving by 2021 to be among the best countries globally by that date, which marks the 50th anniversary of [the UAE].
“These indicators form historic goals for us in the next five years. They constitute the greatest challenges ahead of us; challenges we must overcome in the years to come.
“A week ago, I received a detailed report about the current progress in achieving these indicators – it stands at 62 percent, which means 38 percent of the indicators have not been effectively achieved.
“We have only five years remaining, a very short period in the life of a nation…There is no room for procrastination, no time for delay…We have promised our people to accomplish what is best and we shall fulfil our promise.”
He added: “I will lead this effort and the teams behind it personally. We ask God to guide us to what is best for our country and nation.”