UAE steers shift towards innovation

UAE steers shift towards innovation
His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, visiting etisalat pavilion at Gitex Technology Week on Sunday. - Wam

Dubai - Shaikh Hamdan opens the 36th edition of Gitex Technology Week in Dubai on Sunday.

By Abdul Basit

Published: Sun 16 Oct 2016, 8:00 PM

Last updated: Tue 18 Oct 2016, 10:58 AM

The UAE continues to be the gateway between East and the West, as seen by the large number of international participants at the 36th edition of Gitex Technology Week in Dubai on Sunday.
This was stated by Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council, while opening the five-day event at the Dubai World Trade Centre.
The large number of local participants also reflects a shift in thinking, innovation and performance which will empower the UAE's shift to smart government, enhance innovation in all sectors and help transform the UAE into the fastest growing and the happiest country in the world, Shaikh Hamdan said.
Around 4,000 exhibitors from 60 countries are showcasing the latest technologies at Gitex, the largest technology exchange and marketplace for the Middle East and Africa.
Startups at Gitex
Accompanied by Shaikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, and senior officials, Shaikh Hamdan toured the exhibition.
He also stopped at the stands of participating global technology corporations including Samsung, Microsoft, Dell EMC, Intel, pavilions of Nigeria and Germany, as well as local government entities such as Smart Dubai.
Dubai hosted the launch of the world's first, most global, week-long startup showcase at the Gitex Technology Week. Among the more than 410 startups from nearly 60 countries, more than half are making their global debut at the Gitex Global Startup Movement.
The diversity of the Gitex Global Startup Movement - both in terms of its international attendance of and the industry and development of the startups - is a key differentiator for the movement
Held in response to the need for an industry hub for investors, incubators, and accelerators to identify the world's next great startups and support youth empowerment, the new Gitex Global Startup Movement is a comprehensive and dynamic technology platform that will promote global knowledge exchange, foster economic growth and encourage startup investment in the region. An early adopter of technology, with a 95 per cent household internet penetration, the UAE is a hotbed for technology innovation.
Young entrepreneurs and startups have the potential to contribute significantly to employment opportunities for this class of fresh graduates. Digital entrepreneurs are expected to add $14 billion to the UAE's GDP, and $1.5 trillion to global GDP by 2020, according to recent reports from the consultancy Accenture.
Many innovative startups have already experienced success in the UAE including UAE-born ventures such as car booking service Careem, package delivery app Fetchr, and online shopping platform
"The UAE is the perfect place for technology-based startups to grow. At the Gitex Global Startup Movement, startups can benefit from fundraising from across emerging market investors who are eager for new innovations," said Mudasir Sheikha, co-founder of Careem.
Other innovative startups showcasing at the Gitex Global Startup Movement include Be Happy, Be Healthy from Germany, the energy medicine of the future; Bulbul, which is India's first travel app for children; and iCare from the UAE, which is the world's first blood bank mobile app; and, Pakistan's fastest-growing mobile retail platform.

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