UAE’s AI investments rise by 70%


DUBAI Sept 28 (TNS): The United Arab Emirates (UAE), a major oil supplier seeking to transform itself into a digital economy, has seen investments into Artificial Intelligence (AI) growing by 70 percent over the past three years, UAE state news agency WAM reported.

The value is projected to reach 33 billion dirhams (nine billion dollars) by the end of 2017, WAM cited the Ministry of Economy in the Gulf state as saying.

The figures in AI show “that UAE is ready to embrace AI technologies, managing in a few years to be a role model for adopting state-of-the-art technologies across all economic sectors,” said the report.

“AI today emerges as one of the pillars of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which is considered as a main catalyst for economic diversification in the 21st Century,” said Abdullah Al-Shamsi, Assistant Under-Secretary for Industrial Affairs, Ministry of Economy.

He cited official statistics purporting that scientific research contribution to the country’s gross domestic product reached 0.87 percent.

“The UAE has been among the first countries to realize the central importance of Artificial Intelligence to build a knowledge-based economy that adopts scientific research and high-end technology as among the key enabler of the UAE Vision 2021,” the official added.

AI investments are expected to hit 33 billion dirham (9 billion dollars) by the end of the current year, he said.

The UAE is leading the adoption of digitization and innovation in the region and comes at the forefront of introducing smart services, said Ali Salah, Head of the Economic Studies Section at the Future Centre for Strategic Studies and Research.

Earlier in the week, the UAE government said it is striving hard via global cooperation to become “the best and most advanced country in the world.”