UAE: Digital economy set to grow to over $140 billion by 2031

The study highlights Dubai's endeavours to establish itself as a key tech hub and leading global destination for digital companies



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File photo

By Web Desk

Published: Tue 31 Jan 2023, 8:56 PM

A recent report estimates that UAE's national digital economy will grow to well over $140 billion in 2031. The report was published by the Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy as part of its efforts to strengthen the digital economy ecosystem in Dubai and achieve the goals of the Dubai Economic Agenda (D33).

The study, titled ‘Dubai’s Digital Economy and its Thriving Startup Ecosystem’, was published in collaboration with Entrepreneur Middle East. It explains the role of the Chamber in supporting digital economy strategies and achieving the wise leadership’s objectives to cement Dubai’s position as a global capital of the digital economy.

Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy, and Remote Work Applications, Chairman of Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy, said that doubling the contribution of the digital economy to the UAE’s GDP from 9.7 per cent to over 20 per cent by 2031, reflects Dubai’s endeavours to establish itself as a key tech hub and leading global destination for digital companies.

Al Olama stressed that the UAE’s pioneering initiatives to build the economy of the future help create a world-class digital infrastructure and support the dynamic start-up ecosystem. "Our strategic plans will also focus on achieving the objectives of the Dubai Economic Agenda (D33), especially in terms of driving digital transformation, developing a sustainable business sector, and adding an average of Dh100 billion per year in economic value to the emirate’s economy," he said.

“Raising the business community’s awareness about challenges and future trends is a key priority, as is highlighting the importance of digital transformation as an engine of sustainable growth for the business sector,” he added.

The report provides insight into Dubai’s digital economy startups. Approximately 96 per cent of all funds raised in the UAE since 2017 have been raised by startups headquartered in Dubai. In 2021, all startups across the entire country raised $1.2 billion, the vast majority of which went to Dubai-based startups. The emirate’s startups raised more than $2 billion in 2022, more than double the funding figures in 2021.

In addition to highlighting the key strategies, drivers, and stakeholders behind Dubai’s digital economy, the report also features interviews with iconic homegrown startups, as well as recent Dubai transplants from various industries.

The study goes on to reveal some of the Chamber’s upcoming plans and strategies, which include attracting 300 digital startups to Dubai by the end of 2024; attracting 100 international experts in advanced technologies; improving laws and policies that would support the growth of the digital economy; organising an international conference on the new digital economy; promoting digital transformation across national companies; and enhancing the business environment to attract global digital firms.

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