Finastra introduces UAE students to the world of coding

Finastra’s Hour of Code program was delivered to pupils from Dubai International Academy Emirates Hill in December 2019.
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Updated 19 January 2020

Finastra introduces UAE students to the world of coding

For the second year since the inception of its corporate social responsibility program, Finastra in collaboration with, teamed up with Innoventures Education and two local schools to introduce young minds to the world of coding and computer science. The initiative is part of Finastra’s long-term commitment to delivering computer science skills to children and young people in the rapidly advancing digital Middle East. 

The Hour of Code initiative is designed to demystify code and broaden participation in the field of computer science. During a week-long event, Finastra hosted more than 580 students from Dubai International Academy (DIA) Emirates Hills and Dubai International Academy Al-Barsha. The children had the opportunity to design and execute commands within a gaming environment such as Star Wars or Flappy Bird. Younger children, between seven and nine years of age, used “blocks” of code in a drag-and-drop environment, while older children learned to write code in JavaScript.

According to the World Economic Forum’s report on “Future of Jobs and Skills,” 65 percent of children entering primary school today will ultimately end up working in completely new job types that do not yet exist. Participation in the program allows Finastra to help further expand the movement globally and to introduce computer science to a wider audience, encouraging more girls and under-represented minorities to get involved.

Serge Tohme, managing director, Middle East, Africa and Turkey, Finastra, said: “Through the Hour of Code initiative, we want to introduce innovation in the old silos of education systems, demonstrate the power of coding and show the younger generations new career avenues. The initiative is a great way to reach young people from all backgrounds, to make them more aware of the potential of computer science, open their eyes to new career opportunities and spark their interest in learning more.”

Candice Combrinck, head of primary, Dubai International Academy Al-Barsha, said: “It’s the second year that our children have taken part in the Hour of Code initiative and it’s been as big a success as the first. The program is helping raise our students’ aspirations and shown them what opportunities there are for coders. We believe it is very important to forge links between schools and the workplace even for young pupils so that they are encouraged to link their educational experiences with the real world.”

ACWA Power increases stake in HEPC

Updated 08 June 2020

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As part of its strategy to facilitate growing trade demands within the Gulf region, Abu Dhabi Ports has announced the establishment of a new feeder services company, Safeen Feeders.

Safeen Feeders will serve the group’s mainliner shipping clients and support the region through increased connectivity and optimized shipping costs within and beyond the region.

The company will introduce a new feeder service linking Abu Dhabi to ports serving the UAE, the broader Gulf region and the Indian subcontinent. The service will be executed in partnership with Bengal Tiger Line (BTL), one of the world’s most renowned feeder service operators, through a vessel sharing agreement.

Captain Mohamed Juma Al-Shamisi, group CEO of Abu Dhabi Ports, said: “The launch of Safeen Feeders significantly strengthens our ability to enhance the competitiveness of our growing base of global customers, and helps our region meet international demands as a trade and logistics hub connecting east and west.”

The service will allow for a timely and efficient exchange of container cargo between mainliner vessels and the vessels within the rotation calling at nine regional ports located across the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Pakistan, and Western India.

“With the addition of the new service, our shipping clients can expect efficient and cost-effective transhipment feeder solutions with ever-expanding regional and international reach and connectivity. These two elements are absolutely vital in today’s increasingly competitive international trade environment,” added Al-Shamisi.