DUBAI: The cabinet of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) adopted the National Space Strategy 2030 during its meeting at the Presidential Palace in Abu Dhabi, aiming to achieve the UAE’s vision in the field of space exploration, technologies, and applications.
Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice president and prime minister of the UAE, said in a news release by the cabinet office that the UAE was at the forefront of space exploration thanks to its young Emirati talents.
The UAE seeks to establish a major global hub for space science and technology, through investing in building capabilities and creating a scientific, legislative and financing environment that is stimulating and attractive for space projects.
“Last year, we celebrated the launch of the first satellite fully built by young Emirati engineers,” said Al Maktoum. “And in the very near future, we will see them operating international space technology centres based in the UAE. We will see Emirati cadres, highly skilled and specialised in space science, achieving scientific breakthroughs that serve the entire humanity.”
“We are investing in the space industry, with ambitious projects and initiatives that will benefit our citizens and contribute to key sectors of the national economy. This is an important milestone for our country, and we aim to become a model for countries seeking to launch ambitious space programmes,” he said.
The National Space Strategy includes six objectives, 21 programmes and 79 initiatives, which translate into focus areas and programmes benefiting more than 85 entities in the UAE.
The Emirates Space Agency is responsible for following up the implementation of the strategy in cooperation with strategic partners and more than 20 agencies and space centres abroad.
Can Japan end its obsession with plastic?
TOKYO: Amid global concern apropos single-use waste, new legislation can help end Japan’s obsession with plastic.
The push comes ahead of the G20 summit, which Japan will host in Osaka in June. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government wants to use the meeting to push for an agreement on reducing marine plastic waste. But the country’s own record on single-use plastic is hardly exemplary: Japan generates more plastic packaging waste per capita than any other country except the United States, according to the UN.
“We believe there is room to reduce that volume and we are now considering ways to do that,” said Kentaro Doi, director of plastic waste strategy at Japan’s environment ministry. In 2018, Japan’s government unveiled a proposal to start tackling the issue, with the goal of reducing the country’s 9.4 million tonnes of plastic waste a year by 25 percent by 2030.
A key part of the proposal is to require businesses to charge for plastic bags – a measure that has been already been widely adopted around the world. “What we are going to do is to put a value on it… we would like people to think about whether it is really necessary to use them,” Doi told the Media.
But government officials acknowledge Japan is coming to the issue late – dozens of countries already require businesses to charge for plastic bags, and many have banned their use outright. “Other countries were ahead of us,” concedes Doi, adding that the policy in Japan “will be introduced in 2020, at the earliest.”
Israel kills 3 Palestinians in separate attacks
NABLUS: Palestinian Health Ministry stated today that Israeli forces had killed three Palestinians: “The unit that communicated with the Israeli side reported that a Palestinian was killed in Abveyn village”.
According to a statement from the Israel army, Omar Abu Leyla, the alleged perpetrator of a Sunday attack on Israeli soldiers, stabbed an Israeli soldier at the entrance of the Ariel settlement before stealing his weapon. He then drove his car to the Gitai Avishar junction and opened fire on Israelis at a bus station. He was killed in an operation in Ramallah.
In another attack, Israel forces killed two Palestinians in Nablus, the ministry said. Israel has not given the bodies to Palestine, Civil Liaison Manager Mazin ed-Denbek told Anadolu Agency.
Australian govt changes system for job-seekers
CANBERRA: The Australian government announced today the biggest overhaul of the nation’s unemployment services in two decades.
Kelly O’Dwyer, the minister for jobs and industrial relations, said in a media release on Wednesday that the government would make sweeping changes to the 1.3-billion-Australian dollar (920 million U.S. dollars) per year employment system, Jobactive, in the lead-up to May’s general election. Under the changes, the majority of Jobactive services will be delivered via a digital platform for both employers and job-seekers. Prime Minister Scott Morrison said that the new system would be more targeted to individual needs. “It’s a more flexible plan which is giving people more tools, both those helping people find jobs and help people looking for jobs,” he said in an appearance on Network Seven television. The government will also abolish the requirement that job-seekers receiving unemployment benefits apply for 20 jobs every month in order to continue receiving welfare.
While the number of applications being lodged by users will continue to be monitored, the system will also take into account whether job-seekers are engaging in volunteering, work experience opportunities or training. “Our changes are the most extensive shake-up of employment services in 20 years, empowering job seekers who are job-ready and prioritizing support for those who face the greatest barriers,” O’Dwyer said on Wednesday. “Whilst the government’s employment services system, Jobactive, has performed better than its predecessor programs and achieved strong results in getting people off welfare and into work, with almost 1.3 million job placements since July 2015, we want to see even more Australians enter meaningful, long-term work.”