• More schools needed in Western Region to support growing population
  • Al-Gharbia has 45 schools
  • Government wants to partner with private sector

The Western Region of Abu Dhabi wants more private investment in schools to support its growing population, the Al-Gharbia Development Forum, held in Abu Dhabi, was told on 19 May.

“We are keen to develop the appropriate environment to encourage investors to build schools in the Western Region,” said Amal Abullah al-Qubaisi, director-general of the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC). “I call on business leaders and investors to stretch a hand of partnership to education bodies and build bridges.”

Al-Qubaisi is also head of the social development committee of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, the emirate’s supreme decision-making body.

She said the Western Region currently has 45 schools, of which 33 are public and 12 are privately owned. ADEC has recently completed the construction of five schools including three in Mirfa.

Al-Qubaisi said ADEC is aiming to promote high standards and produce more UAE nationals capable of working in the private sector.

“We believe the outcomes of education need to complement the needs of industry and the labour market,” she said.  “We are developing our curriculum, emphasising science, engineering and technology, and working to enhance the tertiary sector.”

“Knowledge is our commodity and our future wealth,” Al-Qubaisi said. “The creation of a generation that can absorb such knowledge is our goal. Education is the key to the future and will require us to be serious about what we do.

The Al-Gharbia Development Forum was planned to disseminate information to investors, entrepreneurs, developers, project owners and the wider value chain about opportunities in the Western Region, which accounts for about 40 per cent of the UAE’s GDP. Topics covered included oil and gas; progress in the UAE’s nuclear energy programme; infrastructure investment plans in Al-Gharbia; education and health; banking and finance; developments in the food production and processing sector; real estate; and tourism projects.

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