WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN 5 YEARS’ TIME?

Abu Dhabi 2016 | ECONOMY | FOCUS: FIVE-YEAR PLAN

The Abu Dhabi Plan—a five-year forecast of Abu Dhabi's vision that will direct policy through until 2020—has been launched. This plan fits under the auspices of Abu Dhabi Vision “to continue to create a confident, secure society and to build a sustainable, open, and globally competitive economy," which was defined in the Abu Dhabi Policy Agenda in 2007, rather than usurping it—the overall goals are the same but it allows the government and its entities to refocus, align, and synchronize their policies and initiatives.

The plan is the latest installment in the Emirate's medium-term priorities for the long-term goal of achieving the vision. The plan is purpose-built to merge areas that can bring success through collaboration, as the growing economy develops, catering for opportunity and necessity for policy to overlap. It contains some elements that allow financial resources to be utilized efficiently between entities, rather than a handful sharing the brunt of costs while delivering initiatives. The higher degree of coordination should facilitate greater utilization of human resources across government and maintain knowledge transfer between departments with the respective expertise.

The Abu Dhabi Plan has translated Abu Dhabi's vision into 25 long-term objectives and 83 programs, structured around five sectors, involving more than 65 governmental entities. As an example, creating a confident, secure society has been represented in 10 objectives within the social development sector and the security, justice, and safety sector, while building a sustainable, open, and globally competitive economy accounts for eight objectives in the economic development and infrastructure and environment sectors, in addition to seven objectives in the government affairs sector that would contribute to achieving excellence in the government.
The 83 programs prioritize the government projects for all parts of society, such as increased and developed services for the disabled, creation of jobs in Al Ain, and improving air and water quality, while minimizing climate change and enhancing the collaboration between federal and local governments. Enhancing and diversifying the culture of charity features under objective number five, to ensure “Islamic services are of the highest standard."

The “social development that guarantees a decent life for all members of society" has the largest number of programs under one single objective. It also illustrates how the plan is not solely focused on simply driving economic growth through conventional directives, as development at the societal level continues to dominate vectors of government policy. Greater social inclusion leads to more jobs created, greater diversification, and facilitating those to become economically active when previously they might not have been. Ultimately there are no aspects of the plan that should cause surprise; the economy does not need to be shaken up while it is still on an upward trajectory. The economic initiatives that do feature are more reiterations of the direction the Emirate is moving in, notably to develop the non-oil sectors and maintain a high level of attraction and safety for investors, as well as enhancing the private sector and supporting SMEs.

As an example of coordination, the health objective will be coordinated by Health Authority Abu Dhabi (HAAD), the authoritative figurehead within the health sector. It will oversee and implement awareness raising, as well as workplace and community programs in collaboration with Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC), Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC), Abu Dhabi Occupational Safety and Health Center (OSHAD), Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA), the Department of Municipal Affairs (DMA), Abu Dhabi Media Company (ADMC), and the healthcare provider, Abu Dhabi Health Service Company (SEHA). In total, 33 entities will have a coordinating role to play, with some fulfilling several duties. Coordinating roles have been allocated to entities that have the most experience in a given area, as well as the capacity to oversee the implementation of the programs.

The five-year plan was formed from the basis of the Strategic Planning and Government Entity Performance Management Guide, which looked into the methods and practices being implemented within government departments. This allowed them to be aligned with the Abu Dhabi Plan and now be subject to greater transparency through bi-annual reporting to GSEC, which will be outcome-measured against KPIs. Around 200 KPIs that have been identified with annual targets until 2020 were a result of 143 workshops organized, which engaged over 60 government entities. These cover social development, safety, security, economic development, infrastructure, and government affairs.