UAE ranks highly in international data openness report

Emirates jumps 51 positions, outperforming US and UK

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 30:  A general view of the Dubai skyline on November 30, 2020 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The country's government recently decreed that foreigners can fully own local firms, a change from previous law that required foreign investors to have an Emirati partner with at least a 51% stake in the company. Several types of businesses were excluded from the new law, such as those in the energy, telecommunications and transport sectors. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)
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The UAE ranked 16th in the latest open data inventory report.

Compiled by Open Data Watch, an international non-profit organisation established in 2013, the fifth annual report assessed the coverage and openness of official statistics in 187 countries.

The report found that the UAE has made more data available and improved elements of data openness in the past 12 months.

The country's Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre this year launched an open data race, which is a competition among the UAE's government agencies.

The UAE jumped 51 positions from 2018, outperforming the US, South Korea, Switzerland, France, Spain, Japan and the UK.

Omar Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, told the Wam news agency: "Government open data publishing aims to promote the concept of transparency in government action, which is among the top priorities of the UAE’s leadership."

The report found that the top-performing 30 countries have mostly remained the same since 2016, but that is starting to change.

Twenty-three countries have appeared in the top 30 every year since 2016.

They were joined by five new countries in 2018 and two more countries reached the top 30 for the first time in 2020, including the UAE.