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Job Vacancy // Senior Policy Officer for Water, Food and Energy Nexus in the Gulf region at the Netherlands Embassy in Abu Dhabi

The Netherlands Embassy in Abu Dhabi is looking for a Senior Policy Officer that can work energetically to achieve regional cooperation on the water, food and energy nexus. The full-time position (35 hours/ week) will be available for 36 months (3 years). Deadline for applications is 28 June 2018.

Job Description 

The Senior Policy Officer will be a member of the Economic team (EA) at the Embassy. The position is a new one that has been created for the coming three years.

Description of tasks:

  • Strategically advise and provide specific expertise on economic activities in the water, food and energy nexus to Economic Affairs Sections of Dutch missions in the Gulf region.
  • Connect parties in the Netherlands and in the Gulf region to enhance knowledge transfer regarding the water, food and energy nexus.
  • Coordinate and initiate regional nexus activities in close consultation with/on the instructions of Economic Affairs sections of missions in the region, Agricultural Counsellors, the Regional Business Developer and the Expo 2020 project team. In principle, the activities will be carried out by the missions themselves.
  • Contribute to the implementation of the MoU on Innovation partnership between the Netherlands and the United Arab Emirates, in which the water, food and energy nexus is a focus sector. Where possible/appropriate, extend this focus to other countries in the region.
  • Identify and engage the interest of water, food and energy stakeholders in the Netherlands and in the Gulf, with a view to bringing those together.
  • Participate in and contribute actively to the regional working group that will be responsible for programming and implementing the Netherlands’ contribution to Expo 2020.
  • Provide input to the regional communications officer for regional communication with internal and external actors concerning regional cooperation within the framework of nexus and the Netherlands’ participation in Expo 2020.

Job Qualifications

  • Excellent command of written and spoken English, good understanding of Arabic. Knowledge of Dutch is a plus.
  • Academic abilities and an innovation profile, with specific expertise concerning the water, food and energy nexus.
  • Thorough knowledge of/experience with nexus issues in the UAE and Gulf region. Relevant network of contacts in this area.
  • Knowledge of innovative Dutch applications in the areas of water, food and energy.
  • Knowledge of the Dutch landscape: businesses and knowledge institutions involved in the water, food and energy nexus. 
  • Communication skills (spoken and written)
  • Ability to think analytically and strategically
  • Ability to focus on results and network
  • Client orientation and organisational sensitivity
  • Ability to bring people together and work with others

Salary and Terms

The position has been scaled into level 9 of the local staff salary scale. Depending on seniority and previous experience, this entails a gross salary of between AED 17,615/- and AED 26,422/- per month, as well as additional payments totalling two months’ salary annually.

Work Environment and Context 

Water, food and energy are inextricably linked and all three are crucial in the wider MENA region. The Gulf countries have the largest per capita water and energy consumption in the world, something they themselves would like to change. Not only is water the key input for plant and meat production, it is essential for all life. And energy is needed to pump, purify and distribute water, amongst many other things. The Gulf countries also wish to produce as much of their own food as possible. If they are to effectively achieve their ambitions, these sectors must operate in close coordination, as a nexus. The Netherlands has a great deal of expertise in the areas covered by this nexus, in particular when it comes to bringing such different disciplines together. This is why the Economic Affairs sections of Dutch missions in the Gulf region have placed the nexus approach at the core of their economic diplomacy efforts.

Moreover, Dubai will be hosting the 35th Universal World Exhibition (Expo) between October 2020 and April 2021. In February 2017 the Dutch government approved the Netherlands’ participation in Expo 2020 – the first Expo to be held in the region. By participating, the Netherlands aims to promote and strengthen ties with the Gulf region as a whole. Key objectives include market access for Dutch businesses and an increase in Dutch exports to the Gulf region. To this end, the water, food and energy nexus has been chosen as the central theme of the Netherlands’ contribution to Expo 2020.

The Netherlands Embassy Overview

The Netherlands Embassy in Abu Dhabi, together with the Consulate General in Dubai, promotes the interests of the Netherlands in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and aims to strengthen the relationship between both countries in many fields. The UAE is one of the most important export destinations for Dutch products in the Gulf and larger MENA regions. Over the last years, relations between both countries have broadened more and more, and the Netherlands and the UAE now cooperate, or are looking to broaden cooperation, in a range of areas as varied as from Security to Education and from Innovation to Culture and Sports.

At the Embassy diplomats from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and from other Dutch Ministries work closely together with locally employed staff. The principles of working in a ‘one-team’ structure, of which a flexible attitude and solidarity are essential characteristics, lie at the heart of the functioning of the Embassy. Each position has its own job description and own responsibilities, but those are more indicative than limitative. As a team, we tackle the issues facing us together.

The Economic Department of the Embassy is primarily concerned with identifying commercial opportunities in the UAE for Dutch businesses, supporting Dutch business and trade interests, and providing businesses and knowledge institutions with appropriate economic and sectorial information and relevant contacts. This includes responding to trade requests, gathering additional market and other information as required, organizing smaller and larger scale matchmaking and other events, and contributing to pro-active communication towards businesses and institutions, both in The Netherlands and in the UAE. The Economic Department is led by the Deputy Head of Mission, and further consists of two Senior Commercial & Economic Advisors, usually supported by an intern or trainee. The Department cooperates very closely with the colleagues in the Economic Department of the Consulate General in Dubai. The Senior Policy Officer for the Nexus, a new position that has been created for three years, will work closely with and within the Economic Department.

How to Apply

If you are interested in the position, please submit a short cover letter and resume to abu-ea@minbuza.nl to the attention of Mrs. Fleur Hoog Antink. Expressions of interest will be accepted until 28 June 2018. Further information may be obtained from Mrs. Fleur Hoog Antink (via abu-ea@minbuza.nl).

Source: The Netherlands Worldwide website

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