UAE: 8 out of 10 companies ready to harness AI for future growth and success

85% of business leaders believe generative AI will reshape their customer offerings or business operations in the next three years


Angel Tesorero

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Published: Wed 19 Jul 2023, 6:00 AM

Eight out of 10 or 83 per cent of businesses in the UAE have signified their readiness to integrate generative AI (Artificial Intelligence) into their operations to ensure future growth and success, according to a recent survey conducted by an online learning platform company.

Generative AI or machine learning are algorithms such as ChatGPT that can be used to create new content, including audio, code, images, text, simulations, and videos.

The survey, conducted by Coursera in partnership with analytics group YouGov, covered over 500 business leaders in the UAE. It was aimed at studying the perceptions of generative AI and its impact on businesses and workforce.

The study revealed 85 per cent of business leaders believe generative AI will reshape their customer offerings or business operations in the next three years, while a higher percentage or 91 per cent of those surveyed consider AI as crucial for business growth.


Meanwhile, UAE business leaders also expressed concerns how will AI will affect human employment. Coursera noted: “Job displacement (55 per cent), data privacy and security (49 per cent), and lack of transparency in decision-making (43 per cent) were cited as the top risks of implementing AI in operational functions.”

The study further revealed that 50 per cent of business leaders believe generative AI will change the required skills for the workforce. To bridge the AI skills gap, companies will take advantage of online training to upskill their employees.”

Kais Zribi, general manager for Middle East and Africa at Coursera, noted: “Data from our study emphasises the importance of continuous learning for both employees and job seekers, empowering them to proactively adapt to the ever-evolving demands of the modern workplace."

Transformative technology

Zribi underscored “the remarkable implementation of generative AI and the UAE companies' commitment to embrace this transformative technology highlight the nation's successful investment in shaping the future.”

“This strategic move aligns with ongoing digital transformation efforts, unlocking unprecedented efficiency and productivity for the workforce,” he added.

Significant growth

The AI market in the Middle East is expected to grow significantly in the coming years. According to global accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), AI is projected to contribute close to 14 per cent of the UAE’s national GDP by 2030, while the Middle East is expected to capture 2 per cent of the total global benefits of AI in 2030, which is estimated to reach $320 billion.

Last month, Dubai launched the ‘Dubai Centre for Artificial Intelligence’ in line with the UAE Strategy for Artificial Intelligence. AI will target vital sectors in the country, including the transportation, health, space exploration and renewable energy resources.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, earlier said: “Dubai’s government will be the best in the world in deploying AI within its various entities. The new centre is the first step in achieving this goal and developing future services to keep pace with rapid technological advancements."


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