In a landmark decision, the United Arab Emirates President, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, announced the formation of the Artificial Intelligence and Advanced Technology Council (AIATC).
In his capacity as Ruler of Abu Dhabi, the UAE President has issued a law establishing the Artificial Intelligence and Advanced Technology Council, Chaired by Tahnoun bin Zayed, with Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed as Vice Chairman. pic.twitter.com/S97fTPOQVl
— مكتب أبوظبي الإعلامي (@ADMediaOffice) January 22, 2024
This move, steered by the Abu Dhabi government, is set to place the UAE at the forefront of artificial intelligence (AI) and advanced technology sectors globally.
Establishing a new era of technological leadership
The AIATC, a brainchild of the UAE government, is not just a mere institutional addition. It symbolizes a shift in the UAE’s approach towards embracing and nurturing advanced technologies. Under the leadership of Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed Al Nahyan as chairman and Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan as vice chairman, the council is tasked with a significant mandate.
“The Ruler’s resolution appointed His Highness Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed Al Nahyan as Chairman of the AIATC and Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed as Vice Chairman.”
Its primary role is to oversee the development and implementation of AI policies, strategies, and research programs. Moreover, the council’s joint effort with local and global partners aims to boost Abu Dhabi’s stature in AI, aligning with the emirate’s aspirations to become an investment and technology hub.
“The council will be responsible for developing and implementing policies and strategies related to research, infrastructure, and investments in artificial intelligence.”
Similarly, some notable figures have also been appointed members to ensure the council’s efficiency. These include His Excellency Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, His Excellency Jassem Mohamed Bu Ataba Al Zaabi, and Mr. Peng Xiao, the CEO of G42. Their various areas of knowledge are likely to ensure the success of this initiative, cementing the UAE’s reputation for being in a leadership role when it comes to innovation.
AI Strategy: A necessity for future prosperity
At the heart of this initiative is a fundamental belief: nations and companies without an AI strategy would play catch-up in the rapidly changing technology space. Speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF24) in Davos, Switzerland, Mr. Peng Xiao highlighted the critical need for countries to adopt an AI strategy.
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He stressed that nations and businesses risk becoming obsolete unless they have such a strategy these days when AI becomes more prevalent. This insight raises a pivotal question: How do the initiatives taken by AIATC shape the UAE’s positioning both on home soil and abroad in a fast-moving global technological environment? The AIATC’s formation resonates with this sentiment, underscoring the UAE’s interest in not just keeping pace with but leading the global AI revolution.
UAE’s tech-forward approach
The UAE’s journey towards technological dominance is not a new narrative. The country has been consistently intentional in its attention to emerging technologies. This is evident from its initiatives like the Emirates Blockchain Strategy launched in 2018, which aims to advance blockchain adoption globally. The strategy also highlights cost-effectiveness, projecting annual savings of nearly $3 billion for the UAE through blockchain technology.
Further cementing its position in the tech world, the UAE has partnered with leading distributed ledger technology (DLT) firms. A notable example is the IOTA DLT Foundation, which received its license from the Middle East government and established its headquarters in the UAE.
“The news is finally out: #IOTA is the first licensed and regulated DLT Foundation in Abu Dhabi, UAE.”