Oil Dependent UAE Is Investing a Lot on Tech Start-ups and AI
The UAE is trying to make its move into the sectors of technology and artificial intelligence, in an attempt to design its oil, trade and tourism dependent economy.
In the capital of Abu Dhabi, where almost 90% of central government revenue comes from the hydrocarbon sector, authorities have started Hub 71 – a 1 billion dirham ($272 million) plan driven by state investor Mubadala and backed by the Abu Dhabi government to lure and establish technology start-ups.
The UAE has put in place important adjustments to its long-term visa system, which consist of a 10-year residency visa for investors and specialists, and a five-year visa for extraordinary students and entrepreneurs.
The new Hub71 program would be located at the Abu Dhabi Global Market site and would consist of the start of a 500 million dirham fund to devote in technology start-ups. It intends to draw 100 companies over the next three to five years by providing incentives like housing, health insurance, and office space.
Mubadala’s Deputy Group’s CEO Waleed Al Muhairi in a statement mentioned that Hub71 would be bringing together three crucial factors needed for the success of Abu Dhabi’s tech ecosystem i.e. capital providers, strategic partners, and business enablers all under one roof.
The Abu Dhabi Government also started a 50 billion dirham stimulus fund, Ghadan 21, in September last year to boost and strengthen economic growth. Ghadan signifies “tomorrow” in Arabic.
As a strategic partner to Hub71, Microsoft would be providing technology and cloud services to businesses that merge the community. SoftBank would also be effective in the hub and back the extension of companies in which it has contributed money.
The announcements came at a point when first wholly-fixated artificial intelligence (AI) conference comes to an end in neighboring emirate Dubai.