Impression about Yemen [Archives:1999/47/Law & Diplomacy]

November 22 1999


H. E. Khalifah Al-Sheikh Mogren Al-Kanadi
Ambassador of U.A.E
Prior to my arrival in Yemen and assuming my post as Ambassador Plenipotentiary and Extraordinary of the United Arab Emirates in September 1997, I had already compiled sufficient information on Yemen. Besides, I have close ties with many Yemenis from different cultural levels living in the U.A.E. I have read a lot about the history of Yemen which we all are proud of, as Yemen is the origin of all Arabs.
God has bestowed upon Yemen so many features including its fertile land that has been very rich and generous to Yemenis. It has indeed been the land of the “Two Paradises” as mentioned in the holy Qura’an.
I have visited many governorates in the Republic and I am acquainted with so many Yemeni people. I could say that Yemen is in need to extend its agricultural land, especially after qat plants increased at the expense of many other plants.
What I believe should hold the Yemenis’ attention in particular is to face the major detriments for agriculture. They should draw up a national, prospective and strategic plan to develop agricultural instruments and to establish an agricultural system that ensures marketing the different agricultural products. This is very important especially as the Yemeni climate is distinguished for the variations of the seasons which enable farmers to grow many crops. If this is done, Yemen could have food security that meets the needs of the people who are continuously on the rise.
The decision of President Saleh to reconstruct Marib Dam and the help of his Excellency the Honorable Sheikh Zaid bin Sultan Al Nahaian in doing so, is clear evidence that goes to prove that Yemen should restore its status to what it was in the past. The extended agricultural lands that have been reclaimed after the reconstruction of the dam are also a sure sign of the promising future that is awaiting Yemen
One of the priorities that should be taken into consideration is to issue all the programs pertaining to extending arable lands and to give farmers all the facilities necessary to help them perform their work properly. If this is not carried out, conditions will remain as they are. Yemeni, Arab and foreign capital should also be given access to have a pivotal role for investment in this field. It is certain that the revenues of such investment are by no means less important than oil revenues. Agriculture is as much a national wealth as marine, oil and the tourist wealth for which Yemen is famous.
I am pretty confident that the mutual cooperation between the two sisterly countries will continue in this vivid field for measures are conducted to carry out the second stage of the Marib Dam which is funded by the Abu Dhabi Development Fund.