Aquaculture a new focus between UAE Food Security Ministry, Australia’s JCU

DUBAI – The UAE has outlined its ambition to turn out to be a world-leader within the sustainable meals manufacturing sphere of aquaculture with the signing of a Memorandum of Intent, MoI, between the Minister of State for Food Security, Mariam Almheiri, and James Cook University, JCU, Australia.

A Ministry assertion stated that the settlement, signed yesterday, pertains to the Marine Innovation Park, MIP, on the Sheikh Khalifa Marine Research Centre in Abu Dhabi and goals to harness JCU’s information and expertise in biotechnology, e-technology and aquaculture – the farming of fish, shellfish and aquatic crops beneath managed circumstances and with minimal assets.

“This Memorandum of Intent represents a significant development in the UAE’s quest to become a world leader in aquaculture and in scaling up the commercial and sustainable production of fish and aquatic plants using minimal quantities of water. Water husbandry has a special significance for us as a country because of our low annual rainfall and our shrinking levels of groundwater – aquaculture is a sustainable method of food production that represents one of the best uses of this precious resource. We are delighted to have signed an agreement with JCU, an international leader in the Blue Economy, to develop our capacities in this vital area,” the Minister stated.

Under the phrases of the MoI, JCU will spend eight months working with the UAE to develop a strategic plan for the Marine Innovation Park. The college will then work intently with business, authorities and schooling stakeholders within the UAE to determine alternatives and improvement timelines for the MIP.

The choice to pick JCU because the companion of option to develop the capability of MIP, the Ministry assertion stated, was based mostly upon the establishment’s analysis and improvement, R&D, experience in advancing the ‘Blue Economy’ – an rising financial idea that promotes higher stewardship of the world’s oceans. Internationally famend for its marine science analysis and educating programmes which have positioned it within the prime two % of establishments working within the subject, JCU has greater than 50 world-leading employees and graduate analysis college students throughout designated aquaculture analysis centres.

JCU has been persistently ranked as one of many world’s foremost establishments for environmental administration R&D and has specific strengths in learning tropical coastal ecosystems. The college has additionally established a international status for its R&D in macroalgae – or seaweed – with its 14-year focus on the manufacturing and software of those aquatic crops liable for the event of a core information base that has led to a productive and worthwhile freshwater and marine macroalgae aquaculture sector.

JCU Vice Chancellor Professor Sandra Harding stated that JCU was delighted to help the UAE in its ambition to grow to be a world chief in aquaculture and e-technology.

“This is the first phase of what’s expected to be a strong and mutually beneficial partnership between JCU and the United Arab Emirates. JCU has a global reputation for excellence in marine science, fisheries and aquaculture, and this partnership with the UAE Government acknowledges the university’s pre-eminence as world leaders in this area,” Professor Harding stated.

“The project will showcase northern Queensland’s expertise and innovation in marine science. Our experts will be travelling to the UAE to help guide the development of the Marine Innovation Park, which will deliver significant financial benefits for JCU going forward,” she added.

The Trade and Investment Queensland, TIQ, Trade Commissioner for the Middle East, Donna Massie, described the settlement as “a highly prestigious partnership, which showcases Queensland’s capability and the strong relationship between the United Arab Emirates and Queensland.” The signing of the MoI represents the primary of three outlined levels for the Office of Food Security’s relationship with JCU. The second stage pertains to operationalising MIP according to strategic and technical planning processes which were developed by JCU, and the third stage focuses on implementing measures to make sure its long-term sustainability by way of collaborations and partnerships.

The MoI will see the Office of Food Security working with JCU to place MIP as a regional and world chief in marine innovation, develop the mental capital of the UAE and ship sustainable financial prosperity by means of Blue Economy initiatives. Among the proposed actions between JCU and MIP to realize these ends are employees exchanges, joint R&D programmes, a catalogue of analysis coaching actions, bi-lateral pursuit of philanthropic funding and the implementation of a governance mannequin for MIP.

Part of the Sheikh Khalifa Marine Research Centre, MIP was established as an R&D centre that focuses on marine science, biotechnology and aquaculture. Aligned with the UAE’s National Food Security technique that goals to take the nation from its present place of 31st most meals safe nation on the planet to being within the prime 10 by 2021, the power appears at maximising meals yields and creating meals manufacturing symbiosis, with the waste from aquatic animals which might be used for meals fertilising crops that can be utilized to supply biofuel, amongst different issues.

© Copyright Emirates News Agency (WAM) 2019.

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