UAE President issues law changing ‘National Archives’ to ‘National Archives & Library”

 UAE President issues law changing ‘National Archives’ to ‘National Archives & Library”

President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has issued Federal law No 13 of 2021 on amending some provisions of the Federal Law No 7 of 2008 on the National Archives.

According to the Law’s Article 1, the “National Archives” shall be replaced with “National Archives & Library. As per the same article, the “National Archives & Library” aims to collect and supervise preservation and archiving of documents according to best international practices in a way that ensures public interest and contributes to promoting cultural and historical awareness as well as enabling researchers and stakeholders to utilise the information and material contained in the National Archives & Library and facilitate learning from international and national intellectual and technical productions. Article1 adds that the National Archives & Library seeks to revive intellectual and cultural heritage in all its forms and facilitate learning and benefiting from it.

As per Article 4, the National Archives & Library is mandated to protect intellectual productions against any kind of damage and losses and preserve them for next generations. In this respect, the National Archives & Library is entrusted to collect, receive, acquire and document intellectual material as per the articles of this law, including collecting and documenting recorded archival material as well keeping and facilitating their use while employing relevant scientific methods and techniques. The National Archives and Library is also entrusted to collect all the documents of interest to the history of the UAE and the Arabian Peninsula from inside and outside the country or copies thereof.

The National Archives and Library is also entrusted with preparing and publishing research papers and studies aimed at highlighting and giving prominence to the historical and national values and gains of the UAE as well as enabling researchers and stakeholders from benefiting from the material acquired by the National Archive & Library. This is in addition to organising seminars, conferences, training programmes and workshops inside and outside the country in a way that achieves the objectives of the National Archives and Library in collaboration with competent authorities.

The National Archives & National Library is also entrusted with contributing to establishing a national information system by developing national plans and policies that regulate the management of libraries and information centres and ensure bibliographical organisation of the national intellectual heritage by utilising international digital criteria with the objective of establishing the National Bibliography and Uniform Indexing. The National Archives and Library also seeks to establish reference files and participate in similar projects and initiatives regionally and internationally as well as collecting the publications produced by regional and international governmental departments in coordination with competent authorities.

The law provides definitions for the National Information Centre, Bibliography Rules and Guidelines, National Bibliography, Reference Files, the General Information Libraries Network and ISBN. As per the law, every publisher or autho has to to leave a free copy, or more, of any of their publications at the National Archives & National Library while issuing their ISBN before publication.

Article 4 of the Law renders void Clause No 10 of Article 9 of Federal Law 18 of 2016 with regards to reading. All provisions that may contradict with the provisions of this law shall be deemed repealed.