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  • Writer's pictureMajid Alhusseini

Abu Dhabi plans $6 billion spending in cultural sector.

Abu Dhabi plans to invest $6 billion (AED22 billion) in the cultural and creative industries over the next five years as the energy-rich sheikhdom diversifies away from oil, the Financial Times reported.

The investment will go to building museums, as well as sectors ranging from media, gaming and music to cultural heritage, according to the newspaper. Abu Dhabi has already committed $2.3 billion to projects in the sector, it said.

Preparatory work for the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi had been awarded, Mohamed Al Mubarak, chair of the emirate’s department of culture and tourism, told FT. The main contract for the museum is expected soon, he said.

"The Culture and Creative Industries are a significant contributor to the global and local economies. Today, Abu Dhabi supports more than 20,000 sustainable jobs in the field, and we expect this to grow significantly in the coming years," said Saood Al Hosani, undersecretary of Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi).

The Creative Visa programme will provide sustainable employment opportunities in Abu Dhabi by enabling talented creative professionals from around the world to live and work in the UAE, further bolstering the creative scene in the emirate.

Abu Dhabi has been investing heavily in the Culture and Creative Industries (CCI), with investments spanning the creation of cultural institutions and world-class infrastructures to programmes and initiatives of international relevance that have supported the growth of creative and culture businesses, professionals and practitioners based in the emirate and beyond.

DCT Abu Dhabi will consolidate with CCI as part of Abu Dhabi's CCI strategy launched in 2019.

“With the entire CCI under one umbrella, DCT Abu Dhabi is able to harness the natural synergies between the emirate’s culture, tourism and creative sectors, establishing Abu Dhabi as a centre for cutting-edge facilities, outstanding talent and enriching, sustainable opportunities," said Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, chairman of DCT Abu Dhabi.

“We see the Culture and Creative Industries as a powerful driver of economic diversification as well as defining pillars of the emirate’s identity. Through Abu Dhabi’s pioneering leadership, we will champion all CCI domains to transcend borders and reach global audiences and communities.”

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