Saudi Arabia partners with Dell to boost emerging technology

The kingdom intends to attract foreign and local investment worth $20bn in the fields of data and AI in the next 10 years

GE's latest survey shows that 4 in 10 global business executives believe the UAE has created an ‘innovation-conducive environment’. AFP

The Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority joined forces with US company Dell to build advanced capabilities in emerging technology such as artificial intelligence and machine learning.

The move will drive the joint development of engineering and technology projects in the kingdom, SDAIA said on Friday, a day after the agreement was signed at Gitex Technology Week in Dubai.

They will develop AI, cloud computing, data analytics and enterprise storage solutions.

“We are excited about the growth and opportunities created by the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and we are constantly striving to deliver products and services that are developed around advanced emerging technologies,” said Dr Esam Al-Wagait, director of Saudi Arabia’s National Information Centre.

“We are delighted to partner with Dell Technologies on our ongoing digital journey.”

Mr Al-Wagait signed the pact on behalf of SDAIA.

The kingdom intends to attract foreign and local investment worth $20 billion in the fields of data and AI in the next 10 years.

It launched its National Strategy for Data and Artificial Intelligence in October.

AI is expected to contribute up to 12.4 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product – about $135bn – by 2030, according to a report by consultancy PwC.

Mohammed Amin, Dell's senior vice president for the Middle East, said the US company looked forward to strengthening capacity-building efforts in AI and big data in a way that contributes to the development of the country's knowledge economy.

“It is a pleasure to collaborate with SDAIA as they look to enhance their role as the leading technology enabler of Saudi Arabia’s digital transformation vision,” he said.

The agreement will also enable the exchange of best practice and expertise to develop integrated projects that address the technology needs of public sector entities, SDAIA said.