Saudi Arabia on Wednesday launched a couple of initiatives to enhance the Kingdom's global ranking in digital areas such as artificial intelligence.
The announcement was made at an event called Launch held on Wednesday hosted by the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming and Drones (SAFCSP), as well as the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA), and the Saudi Federation for Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA).
Saudi officials launched the initiatives at a conference in the capital Riyadh. The first program is called “Hima,” which aims to support innovation in enterprises with a value of SR2.5 billion, Minister of Communication and Information Technology Abdullah Al-Swaha said.
The minister added that the Kingdom will be able to see more programmers in every 100,000 citizens as a way to measure the success of creating a capable workforce, a move that will be supported with the creation of many technical and digital academies in the Kingdom with leading international partners.
Saudi Arabia aims to be one of the top 5 countries globally in AI, and this requires the creation of 25,000 specialists jobs in data science and AI before 2030, Abdullah Al-Ghamdi, head of the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority, said.
Saudi Arabia will see significant growth in all major areas of digital technology from Internet of Things (IoT) to cloud computing, increasing thereby the entire size of the information and communication technology (ICT) sector to $27 billion by 2025, Mohammed Al-Tamimi, governor of the Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) told a forum in Riyadh on Tuesday.
Similarly, the IoT market size is expected to grow at a compound annual rate of 26 percent, while cloud services are expected to make up to 30 percent of the total ICT spend in the Kingdom by 2030, he added.