UAE ministries launch guide to measuring research and development spending

The strategy aims to inform decision-making as the country becomes a knowledge-based economy

Sarah Al Amiri, Minister of State for Advanced Technology, has demonstrated the benefits of a knowledge-based economy through her work guiding the Emirates Mars Mission. Photo: Apco
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The Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology has joined forces with more than a dozen local and federal departments to launch a guide to measuring research and development spending in the government sector.

Its wide-ranging plan is to gather important data to inform decision-making and accelerate the UAE’s transition into a knowledge-based economy.

The ministry has worked to shape the policy alongside the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre as well as government departments.

They include the Ministry of Health and Prevention, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment and the Ministry of Economy, as well as Abu Dhabi National Oil Company and the Department of Education and Knowledge.

Sarah Al Amiri, Minister of State for Advanced Technology, said the move was in line with efforts from UAE leaders to transform the country into a influential force in science and technology.

“The guide is part of the development of an integrated system to effectively govern and co-ordinate R&D activities, in line with the goals of Operation 300bn, to further enhance the thriving national industrial sector,” said Ms Al Amiri, who is also chairwoman of the UAE Space Agency.

“It also supports the nation’s efforts in fortifying the R&D ecosystem across sectors, to elevate the UAE as a productive global hub for science and technology.”

Encouraging enterprise

Hussain Al Hammadi, Minister of Education, said the strategy was a significant step.

“MoIAT’s launch of the National Guide for Measurement of R&D Expenditures in Government Sector, in collaboration with the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre and 16 local and federal entities across the UAE, is a pioneering step in line with the government’s directives to develop modern tools that encourage innovation in various fields.”

The guide consists of two main segments. The first explains and defines concepts related to R&D activities and their classifications, illustrative examples about the types of activities and what constitutes as R&D, and the standards for collecting and reporting R&D expenditure and staff in a government office.

The second is a summary of the instructions issued by the Ministry of Finance, in line with glossary of concepts and terms within the guide, and the classification of R&D activities according to the accounting structure of the federal bodies registered in the Ministry of Finance, and according to the Classification of the Functions of Government.

Updated: November 13, 2021, 3:12 PM