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Document Preservation Policy

NA Document Preservation Policy

Definition: To maintain the physical and intellectual value of original documents for long term preservation, documents requires appropriate security, climate and environmental conditions based on its form.


  • Provide the appropriate conditions for archive storage areas in order to protect all forms of documents against damage.
  • Set rules and principles for the storage of archive materials
  • Apply international security and safety standards, as well as, best practices by equipping the storage locations of archives.

Text of the Policy:

The National Library and Archives document preservation policy involves storage and protection procedures for any type and form of document in the following manner:

  • Specialization of document storage areas based on international standards for file storage, recovery and confidentiality.
  • Specialization of appropriate long-term storage spaces for all types of documents.
  • Setting a scheduled plan of periodic control and maintenance of the environmental conditions of the building and documents storage spaces.
  • Maintaining the cleanliness and maintenance of fragile archival material and documents.
  • Setting appropriate safety, security and environment related instructions and following up their application under optimum storage and document protection conditions.
  • Securing storages spaces by implementing an access and exit control system to avoid document leakage and eventually loss.
  • Setting an emergency plan to face disasters as reviewed by the competent authorities (civil defense).
  • Developing procedures and plans for users to avoid any risk or damage to documents.
  • Ensuring that all standard specification and security conditions are in place when showing archive documents during events and exhibitions.
  • Application of health and safety legislation and regulations adopted in Abu Dhabi and the United Arab Emirates.

Documents Accessibility Policy

Documents Accessibility Policy

Definition: This policy sets out the main principles of the legal procedures through which archival materials are to be made available for researchers and students according to Federal Law no. 7 of 2008 concerning the National Library and Archives and it’s by law and the approved procedures.


  • Enable the National Library and Archives to set the conditions for giving access to the archives. 
  • Enable researchers to have access to the information and documents needed to complete their studies, justify their rights and support decision making.

Text of the policy: The National Library and Archives is committed to the following:

  • Upon circulation of the documents and accessibility to researchers, the following conditions should apply:
  • Assure that the documents requested by researchers is not classified as confidential.
  • Assure that the documents needed by researchers include content for the benefit of the researchers.
  • Assure that the document is for scientific and historical research according to the classification system applied in the National Library and Archives.
  • Grant access via a form prepared for that purpose.
  • At the discretion of General Director of NA, permit access to the hard copy of the document.
  • Under this policy, and upon assessment, the National Library and Archives determines the types of documents that may be accessed according to certified standards and laws.
  • After the documents classification as confidential has been removed, the documents may be viewed.
  • Measures must be taken to ensure that documents will not be subject to loss or damage due to handling. 
  • The use of directives and procedures upon circulation of electronic, sound and visual documents due to their fragility. 
  • Measures must be taken to avoid transferring the borrowed documents to units, employees, researchers and preventing leakage of their content.
  • Appropriate procedures must be followed for returning all the documents on time, with possibility of extension according to the needs of the research.
  • Abide with the procedures and conditions to access private archives stored within the National Library and Archives.

Historical Archives Collection Policy

Historical Archives Collection Policy

Definition: This policy sets forth the legal structure under which the National Library and Archives performs its mission to collect historical archives beneficial to researchers and citizens while maintaining a record of the nation’s history.


This policy aims to:

1.Execute the collection and preservation strategies of the historical archives of the United Arab Emirates.

2.Underline the responsibilities of the National Library and Archives and governmental authorities in collecting and preserving a national cultural archive.

3.Encourage governmental and private bodies to transfer their historical records to the National Library and Archives when they are not needed anymore for official work.

4.Set principle directives in determining the type of historical records that should be transferred to the National Library and Archives or any of its branches for permanent preservation.

5.Searching for private records and receiving them according to the allowed procedures of the National Library and Archives.

Text of the policy:

1.The National Library and Archives shall collect public and private archives in any form produced by governmental bodies in application to the acquisition policy as follows:

2.Set the archives mechanisms, transferring measures, procedures, rules and standards to transfer documents from government entities to NA in order to preserve the document for a long term.

3.Collect-expired original documents from governmental authorities, public and private bodies inside and outside the country in accordance with conservation the retention policy.

4.Commit all governmental authorities to apply the permanent and historical document transferring procedures approved by the National Library and Archives in accordance with the retention schedule.

5.Assess historical documents in order to select those of historical, national and permanent value.

6.The National Library and Archives should abide with the following when assessing historical files for permanent conservation:

  • Documents concerning strategies and policies
  • Documents concerning the organization of governmental and private bodies
  • Documents containing data on the society
  • Documents of an artistic, technical and scientific nature representing a reference for historical studies
  • Documents containing general information on incidents, individuals, locations, historical buildings and others events of historical nature.

7.Collect documents resulting from the activities of private establishments in or outside of national soil.

8.Collect documents from both individuals and private entities by legal and technical procedures (purchase, accepting donations, deposit) on a condition that they have a historical or national value. The National Library and Archives owns the pre-emption to purchasing any private document of historical value concerning the United Arab Emirates State for sale outside or inside the country.

9. Accept any donation from public personality, families or private institutions inside or outside the country, by the initiative of the granting party, thus transferring ownership of the granted document to the National Library and Archives.

Paper and Electronic Archives Management Policy

Paper and Electronic Archives Management Policy

Definition: This policy sets forth an integrated system for paper and electronic archives management and a life-cycle determination in accordance with Federal Law 7 of 2008 concerning the National Library and Archives and its executive regulations.


  • Provide a framework for files and documents management system throughout their life cycle, from production until final archiving or destruction.
  • Set directives concerning the production and management of hard and soft copy documents in the National Library and Archives.
  • Set limits of responsibility for all participants in the documents paper and electronic production and management process in the National Library and Archives.
  • Determine the scientific requirements for paper and soft copy storage and user accessibility conditions.

Text of the Policy:

The National Library and Archives shall apply an integrated policy for managing documents, subject to state-of-the-art technology in computer software and applications used in documentation, electronic archiving and data management, in addition to storage, copy and other data media handling, as follows:

  • Setting the document and archive management system under NA supervision in accordance with the Federal Law no. 7 of 2008 and its executive regulations.
  • Producing, receiving and saving documents and official records to provide certified information to support the National Library and Archives activities and provide evidence of its transitions, and decisions taken.
  • Applying the documents management system throughout the stages of documents (current- intermediate – permanent) according to the lifecycle the National Library and Archives retention policy.
  • Organizing current and intermediate archives according to international standards and best practices in order to ensure maximum benefit from the document, protect NA rights and its stakeholders, and contribute to the development of an information and knowledge management system for decision support.
  • Setting and executing a Vital Record protection plan to avoid damages that might occur from disasters or other risks factors.
  • Storing and saving documents in accordance with the original format of the files for timely access and secured storage.
  • Setting a system for easy quick and precise access to the documents as part of the information security policy.
  • Organizing the document disposal process according to the National Library and Archives executive regulations and approved procedures.
  • Classifying the document “Top Secret” if containing information that may affect state security, secrecy of a governmental authority or adversely affecting natural persons if disclosed.
  • Employees are responsible for the saving and storage of documents and their confidentiality during the whole cycle of their use.
  • “Top Secret” documents are preserved in the National Library and Archives according to conditions determined for this type of document. A system is in place to follow-up on their circulation, distribution and control of copies.
  • Preparing a document functional classification and coding system in accordance with the National Library and Archives approved system under the executive regulations of Federal Law no. 7 and ISO 15489 standard specifications.
  • Determining the periods of documents conservation according to work needs and office and intermediate archive conservation legal requirements.
  • Providing state of the art electronic document management systems and ensuring the conservation of reserve electronic copy over the long term.
  • Raising awareness among employees of the importance of documents, managing documents and state of the art technology to preserve them through periodic workshops and training.
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