UAE Cabinet approves trial of facial recognition technology

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His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, chaired a meeting of the federal cabinet on Sunday.

The cabinet approved several initiatives, including the formation of a team to automate government work through remote applications, and the trial of facial recognition technology to verify personal data.

Members hailed the Hope Probe’s successful arrival to Mars, and also decided to restructure Etihad Rail's board, chaired by H.H. Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid reaffirmed that empowering young Emiratis is an established approach that the UAE has believed in since the establishment of the Union.

"Our country celebrates the Hope probe braking into orbit around Mars, a historic milestone that marks the beginning of the coming 50 years," he added.

The employment of facial recognition technology will facilitate services to the public at any time and place without the need of traditional means of identification such as official documents.

The Ministry of Interior (MoI) will expand the use of facial recognition technology after the completion of the initial period, during which the MoI will launch a set of services using the technology in some private sector institutions.

Other initiatives:

  • The Cabinet approved the National Standards Manual for Statistical Data, which will serve as a unified framework for methods and procedures for the collection, processing, storage, and presentation of statistical data.
    • The manual includes eight basic topics: economic statistics, social and demographic statistics, education statistics, employment statistics, environment statistics, buildings and housing units statistics and administrative divisions of each emirate.
  • The Cabinet reviewed a study on the premarital screening for genetic diseases and ways to reduce the incidence of genetic diseases.
    • The study is aimed at prevention of mental and physical disabilities and reducing mortality rate among children, as well as reducing the burden on the family.
    • The study outlines the importance of premarital genetic test as a tool that can predict the risk of developing genetic diseases.
    • A unified digital register of the UAE's genetic diseases will be created, including the results of premarital examinations on recessive genetic diseases. A national laboratory specialising in the science of genetic testing will also be established.
  • The Cabinet approved the restructure of the working group responsible for online communication and work automation, headed by Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Teleworking Applications.
  • The Cabinet approved the formation of the Standing Committee on Conventions. The committee will be headed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.
  • The Cabinet approved adopting the previous daily decline percentage for the shares in the stock markets (a fluctuation limit of 10 per cent).

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