The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is planning a government shakeup that includes the privatization of most of its services as the country transitions into a post-oil economy, ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum said Monday.
Sheikh Mohammed, who is also prime minister of the UAE, revealed the national initiative on Twitter, adding that the measures would include the “largest structural changes” yet. He did not provide a timeline for when the plans would be applied.
“The magnitude of the changes around us and the sky-high ambitions of our people requires a new way of thinking in terms of government structure and work mechanism,” Sheikh Mohammed added in a tweet.
He said the new government will have fewer ministries, but more leaders to deal with national and strategic issues.
“The changes also include expanding the role of the ministry of foreign affairs to include overseeing foreign aid,” he added.
The ministries of education and higher education will merge into one entity, supported by two ministers. An independent body will be tasked with managing all levels of public education and implementing a strategic national plan.
In the healthcare sector, an independent body will monitor state-owned hospitals, while the health ministry would turn its efforts towards public health and disease prevention.
The National Council for Tourism will operate under the ministry of economy in an effort to establish targets and focus on the sector's contribution to GDP.
This isn’t the first time Sheikh Mohammed has used Twitter to announce important changes or reach out to the public. Just last week, he revealed plans to recruit young Emiratis from universities across the country to join the government as ministers. Candidates must be top of their class and under 25 years old, he said.