Tech and crypto: Dubai attracts 9 MNCs with market value of $82bn – Technology

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Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy revealed that the combined market value of the nine multinational companies (MNCs) it attracted to the city last year exceeded AED 304 billion ($83 billion), as the city looks to attract digital investment and specialised talent in the digital space.

In a statement released on Monday, the chamber said three of the firms were from Asia, three from Europe, two from the US and one from Latin America, with activities spanning across cybersecurity, health and fitness tech, robotics, e-commerce, the automotive industry and cryptocurrencies.

His Excellency Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy, and Remote Work Applications, said the digital economy chamber, which comes under the umbrella of Dubai Chambers, is working towards the targets of the Dubai Economic Agenda (D33) and wants to consolidate the digital business environment through various strategic initiatives.

Two of the key objectives of D33 include generating an annual contribution of AED100 billion from digital transformation projects to Dubai’s economy by 2033, as well as increasing private sector investments to AED1 trillion.

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The minister said the chamber also wants to strengthen Dubai’s leadership among the top cities for digital investments and specialised talents in digital sectors.

“This achievement highlights Dubai’s sustained appeal and economic growth, contrasting sharply with major economies like Germany, which are currently experiencing 0% growth,” Kamal Jabbar, partner at Keystone Law Middle East and author of ‘UAE Business Essentials’, told Business Recorder.

“Attracting and retaining foreign investment in the digital economy remains central to D33, with its pro-investment policies continuing to pay dividends despite regional geopolitical risks,” he added.

Looking to the future, Daniel Takieddine, CEO MENA at BDSwiss, said thanks to the city evolving at a rapid pace in terms of infrastructure, regulation and economic prowess, it should “continue to draw multinational companies as well as smaller firms and startups that can tap into the growing pool of talent and the steady growth of the local economy as well as its position as a global hub.

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“The multiple initiatives launched by local authorities have continuously opened new paths for growth, enhancing the allure of Dubai in the eyes of investors and MNCs,” he told Business Recorder.

One of the three chambers operating under the umbrella of Dubai Chambers, the Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy has recently launched several initiatives. One of these is the ‘Create Apps in Dubai’ programme which aims to triple the number of app developers by 2025. As part of this, the chamber also launched the Emirati Training Academy and the ‘App Olympics’ competition.

Meanwhile, the ‘Business in Dubai’ platform introduced in October provides practical support to businesses. The chamber has also organised 24 roadshows and business trips across the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Europe to help attract international digital companies.

Earlier this year, Arslan Javed, founder of generative AI firm Musavir, had told Business Recorder that the top leadership in Dubai “has the conviction to enable technology and startups and make Dubai a hub, like a Silicon Valley of the Middle East.”

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“They’re really pushing hard and really serious about it. They make sure all companies are facilitated,” he had said.

Events like GITEX also go a long way in promoting the city as a tech hub. At the 2023 event, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai had noted that “the remarkable growth in participation at GITEX is a testament to the world’s growing confidence in Dubai as a pivotal hub for the technology industry for tomorrow and beyond.”

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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