News 17 02 2021 1

A virtual forum to highlight the winning research papers of the third edition of the King Hamad Prize for Agricultural Development was held under the patronage of Her Excellency Shaikha Maram bint Isa bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Secretary-General of the National Initiative for Agricultural Development.

The forum, held in cooperation with the University of Bahrain, lasted two hours and featured four papers and a Question and Answer session.

In his welcoming speech, Professor Riyad Hamzah, President of the University of Bahrain, thanked HE Shaikha Maram for her patronage of the forum that reflects the interest of Bahrain's leadership in the agricultural sector and its development.

The sector has a crucial role in achieving food security for Bahrain as one of the tributaries of sustainable development derived from the Bahrain Economic Vision 2030 that aims to build a better life for Bahrainis at all levels, he stressed.

Professor Waheeb Al Nasser, Head of Best Agricultural Research and Studies Committee, expressed his pleasure to participate in the forum aimed to present and highlight the winning research.

"The Best Agricultural Research and Studies Committee that I have the honor to chair since the launch of this award in 2015 has sought to enhance the participation standards and the judging criteria," he said.

Al Nasser said that a major enhancement was to give the opportunity to researches from various countries to compete after the participation was confined to Bahraini researchers and to residents in the Kingdom in the first edition. Starting with the second edition, researchers from Arab countries could apply, he said.

In the first session of the forum, Dr. Abdelhadi Abdelwahab, from the Arabian Gulf University, Bahrain, discussed his paper "Actual Water Use of Young Date Palm Trees as Affected by Aminolevulinic Acid Application and Different Irrigation Water Salinities.

Dr. Abdulrahim Al, Ismaili Sultan Qaboos University, Sultanate of Oman, spoke about his paper "Extended Use of Greywater for Irrigating Home Gardens in an Arid Environment."

A question and answer session followed the two presentations.

In the second session, Dr. Thuraya Al Mansoori, from the University of Bahrain, highlighted her research "Agriculture and higher education: The role of the University of Bahrain in light of the current changes."

Agricultural expert Dr. Mohammed Atman gave a presentation on the "Priority suggested topics in agricultural research and studies."

The two presentations were followed by the second question and answer session.

The forum was attended by postgraduate students, professors, academics and representatives from government agencies and relevant private institutions.

King Hamad Prize for Agricultural Development was launched by Her Royal Highness Princess Sabeeka bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa, wife of HM the King, Chairperson of the Advisory Board of the National Initiative for the Development of Agricultural Sector, as an initiative to create a competitive environment among agricultural projects’ owners, farmers and researchers to advance the sector.

Agriculture, alongside industry and services, are the three most important sectors that make up any global economy. Agriculture is the primary sector for achieving sustainable development and economic balance.