Media in the UAE

This page provides information about the active media in the UAE and the role of the UAE Government in promoting it.


This page covers information relating to:

  • TV, radio and publications
  • Films
  • Media cities
  • New media
  • Media events
  • Media authorities


TV, radio and publications

TV channels, radio stations and print and online publications are amongst the popular media. These are owned by the government and private companies; both local and international. They offer content mainly in Arabic, English, Hindi, Urdu, Malayalam, Tagalog and Farsi.


Government media

Emirates News Agency (WAM) is the official news agency of the UAE Government. It publishes news in Arabic, English and French.


Refer to the list of government media companies that own TV channels, radio stations and print and online publications. 



The UAE Government is taking special interest in promoting the production of films in the UAE. Efforts are being directed towards the production of both: indigenous and foreign films.


Abu Dhabi Film Commission and Dubai Film and TV Commission offer attractive cash rebates to production houses shooting in the emirates.


The annual Dubai International Film Festival further boosts the UAE's position in the global media industry and underline her commitment towards nurturing the industry.


Media cities

Local governments formed media cities to encourage international, regional and local entrepreneurs and large production and publication houses to set up offices and contribute to creating the best art they can in the form of audio, visual or print.


These are free zones that offer several benefits to media and entertainment organisations; most importantly 100 per cent company ownership in a stable, tax-free environment and registration and licensing.


Media cities in the UAE:


New media

New media, such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram are used widely in the UAE; by the government entities and by the public as well.


H. H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai actively uses social media to communicate with the people. 


In 2014, he launched the Arab Social Media Award to harness the positive potential of social media for the good of the Arab world. The awards highlight the most important social media initiatives in the Arab world and promote best practices for social platforms and technologies.


Media events

Events held annually to promote best practices in the media are:


Media authorities

The National Media Council (NMC) is a federal government body established by Federal Law No. 1 for 2006 following amendments to Federal Law No. 91 for 1972 regarding ministries' mandates and specialisations. The NMC mandate includes:

  • Undertaking all media responsibilities provided for in Law No. 15 for 1980 relating to Press and Publications
  • Undertaking all functions provided for in Cabinet decisions relating to the Council
  • Other specialisations delegated to the NMC as provided for in laws, regulations and Cabinet decisions


Local media entities contribute to the development of the media scene in the UAE. They are:


Useful links:

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