Local Business

Smart Dubai and Dubai Economy launch new initiative

Staff Report/Dubai
Filed on November 25, 2019


Smart Dubai and the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DED - Dubai Economy) have announced a joint new data initiative for the retail sector, part of the Private Sector Data Engagement Strategy, which was designed to foster stronger collaboration between the public and private sectors on data.

The new initiative will see anonymous and aggregated datasets examined to understand catchment area (the zone surrounding retailers or malls from which they can draw customers), visitor flow, and spending trends in one of Dubai's largest malls. The project seeks to enhance the resilience of the retail sector by developing an understanding of the demographics and various behaviours, such as spending or visiting patterns. It will also provide insights into citywide data to inform economic policy decision-making.

Smart Dubai is partnering with three government, semi-governmental, and private Sectors to implement the project, namely, the Dubai Department of Economic Development, Majid Al Futtaim (with whom Smart Dubai has an MoU to Enhance Data and Analytics Capabilities since December 2017), and du.

"Data is the foundation of smart cities; we've said this before on numerous occasions, and we reiterate it as we add yet another milestone on Dubai's journey to harness the power of data and drive its plans to become the smartest and happiest city in the world," said Dr Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr, director general, Smart Dubai. "The initiative we are launching is a pragmatic step to materialise the objectives of the Private Sector Data Engagement Strategy, which brings the public and private sectors together to collaborate on data. Our goal is to enable the seamless exchange and use of data to establish a robust data ecosystem and create economic and social value."

"Our focus on the retail sector stems from the immense contribution it makes to Dubai's economy," she explained. "Indeed, wholesale and retail was by far the emirate's largest sector in 2018, according to figures by the Dubai Statistics Centre. It accounted for 26.4 per cent of GDP - more than double the contribution of the second sector in line, transportation and storage, which accounted for just 12.3 per cent."

Sami Al Qamzi, director general of Dubai Economy, said: "Data sharing with the private sector plays a pivotal role in improving policy reforms that are aimed at enabling the government to remain agile in embracing new opportunities for economic growth. For Dubai, it is very important to understand the changes in performance of the emirate's main sectors and analyse the performance of each sector with public and private stakeholders, in order to consistently improve the environment for doing business in the city. We assure the private sector that the government will share more economic datasets with them to help them to improve their business plans."

- business@khaleejtimes.com

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