By Elsa Baxter
Growth of media prompts officials to form strategy to give info to the public.
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai has approved a UAE-wide communication strategy to boost the country’s image.
The growth of media industries in the UAE has prompted officials to come up with the strategy that will “actively approach the media and facilitate the flow of information to the general public,” according to WAM news agency.
The strategy will also be “pro-actively tackling important media issues.” The news agency did not say what these issues were.
Government rules and regulations were named as the greatest barrier to journalists in the Middle East covering stories as they would like, according to a new survey published on Sunday.
The MediaSource/Insight Middle East Journalist Survey 2009 found the greatest irritation to both Arabic and English media was the sending of irrelevant press releases.
The UAE has come under fire recently from international media. Namely, the recent BBC Panorama documentary, which heavily criticized the living and working conditions faced by Dubai’s labourers. Since then efforts have been made to improve their situation.
Other media reports have criticised the country’s default laws, which can see a person go to jail for bouncing a cheque.
The strategy also follows the creation of the ‘Brand Dubai’ office that coordinates the city’s strategic media affairs regionally and internationally, which was set up by Sheikh Mohammed last month.
It will “enhance transparency and flexibility within the Federal entities, besides adopting a more professional and active approach when communicating with the public”, the news agency said.
Its success will be measured by “performance indicators”.
I'm sorry - i just dont the point of this. Are they telling us that from now on the govt will be more transparent in its dealings? I think they just want the curb (the already restricted) "bad" press that they have received. No clarity in laws from criminal to civil to real estate exist here.
Dubai has made enough noise about being the biggest, widest, fastest, quickest, tallest, best etc. so now is the opportunity to tell it like it is. Now is the time to tell it as it is, shock the world media with candor.
not words to improve the image of Dubai to the world. Maybe the government could force the commercial banks to lend money at UAE interbank rate plus a certain margin, and not leave the margin to the discretion of the banks. Maybe the government can revisit their residency visa for property purchase program to revive the property sector. C'mon use the summer month to change the UAE