WAM Emirates News Agency reported:
“The Board of Fujairah Tourism and Archaeological Authority (FTAA), has been set up, according to Emiri decree number 3 of year 2009 issued by HH Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, UAE Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Fujairah.”
“According to the law, the new body shall replace the Fujairah tourism office and archaeology and heritage department.”
“The FTAA shall seek to develop tourism in the emirate in par with the highest standards and compatible with local cultural and civilisation legacy and genuine community values in order to carve a place for the emirate of Fujairah in the regional and world map of tourism. While seeking to achieve its objectives and discharging its duties, the FTAA shall encourage, develop and regulate tourism in the emirate and devise tourism plan for the emirate guided by international recognised standards.”
Reaffirmation of Tourism Goals
This significant decision by the Ruler of Fujairah appears to be a reaffirmation of the October 2007 tourism targets that pledged to maximize the beaches and mountains of Fujairah and highlight the natural beauty of the emirate.
Since those goals were established the recognition of Fujairah’s Wadi Wurayah as the first protected mountain area in the UAE has bolstered the emirate’s standing in eco-tourism.
Coupling of Tourism with Archaeology
It is significant that His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi has continued to link archaeology with tourism under the one authority as Fujairah is one of the most significant emirates in the country in terms of its heritage treasures.
Al Fujairah’s historical and archaeological sites include a number of castles, forts, watch towers and places of worship such as the Al Bidya mosque that continues to operate after more than 550 years.
More than seven Arab and foreign archaeological excavation teams have worked in Fujairah to excavate important sites and treasures around Dibba, Al Bidya, Al Bithna, Murbeh and Qidfa.
New Archaeological Finds
It is fascinating that this announcement by the Ruler of Fujairah comes only a few days after a team of archaeologists discovered pieces of pottery dating back to the third millennium BC in the Al Dour area of the neighboring emirate of Umm Al Quwain and bronze spearheads which date back to the Iron Age in the first millennium BC.
Dr Geoff Pound
Image: “…In order to carve a place for the emirate of Fujairah in the regional and world map of tourism.”