Dubai’s journey to becoming a tech hub: The milestones and the ambitions

Dubai’s inspiring journey is a stellar example of how righteous vision and able leadership can change fortunes. What was once a little-known city on the shores of the Arabian Sea is today leading the world in more than one industry and is talked about in the same breath as cities like New York, Paris, and London. This is not a generational shift or an evolution that took centuries. Instead, this is a transformation that the city boasts of after just a few decades of its formation.

Needless to say, it is the foundational values imbibed by our leaders that have led us to where we are today. Over the years, not only has Dubai evolved into one of the best cities in the world, but it has also emerged as a technology and innovation hub.

From establishing the first Artificial Intelligence Ministry in the world to regularising Metaverse and Cryptocurrency, the city is ahead of time when it comes to embracing all things technology and innovation. But like all other achievements, this status was not earned overnight. It is a result of consistent efforts in the direction of making Dubai a leader in technology and an inspiring force in the digital economy, which is the future of the world.

In the words of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, “The UAE has emerged as one of the major incubators of innovation and future technology in the world today, and its focused initiatives to shape the future have become global models that can be emulated in all sectors.”

“We implement what we plan, and we pursue actions, not theories. The rapidly changing world requires us to accelerate our pace of development, for history does not recognise our plans but our achievements,” His Highness Sheikh Mohammed was quoted saying during the official opening of the Office of the Future in 2016, the first 3D-printed office in the world, which is just one of the many achievements and stepping stones that have led the city to the unparalleled heights it is at today. (1)

To map out, below are a few milestones of many that have helped Dubai keep up with the fast-moving world of technology and innovation on a regular basis. (2)

So where is Dubai in particular, and the UAE in general, headed? What are the aims being chased and what are the benchmarks set to retain quality, legality, and other operational values across industries?

This year, April saw the launch of the UAE Digital Economy Strategy. This strategy lays out clear goals for the country and the city to pursue. It aims to double the contribution of the digital economy to the UAE’s gross domestic product (GDP) from 9.7 percent as of April 2022 to 19.4 percent within 10 years.

It also seeks to enhance the position of the UAE as a hub for the digital economy in the region and globally. The strategy includes more than 30 initiatives and programmes targeting 6 sectors and 5 new areas of growth. On the national level, the UAE also has a Council for Digital Economy to support the goals of the strategy and enhance the implementation of its initiatives in all economic sectors. (3)

Dubai is on a path of constant progress. It has made great progress over the years and has done commendable work in making technology and the digital an integral part of its fabric. And, guided by the right leaders and strategies, the city is already looking forward to a brighter, happier, and more sustainable future for its people in the coming years—one that will continue to inspire the rest of the world.



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