Mohammed bin Rashid launches new vision for Internet City and Media City with AED 4.5 billion (US $1.2bn) for innovation projects
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has launched a new vision for Dubai’s internet and media zones with major investments in innovation to mark the 15th anniversary of Dubai Internet City.
The projects will cost AED 4.5 billion over five years and include 10 million square feet of space for innovation complexes, technology laboratories and smart buildings. Other initiatives include business incubators and financial funds to stimulate innovation.
The announcement was made during a ceremony marking the 15th anniversary of Dubai Internet City.
“Dubai Internet City has supported the transformation of our national economy into a knowledge economy. We have kept pace with great changes in technology. Now the time has come for Internet City to become a creator of change,” HH Sheikh Mohammed said.
The anniversary ceremony was held at the same location where 15 years ago HH Sheikh Mohammed launched his original vision for Dubai Internet City.
“The future will belong to those who dare to take new paths. Recently we announced a national vision and a strategic plan on innovation, because this is how we will unlock added value for our nation. Today we announce a new bundle of initiatives that will make us the innovation capital for more than 2 billion people who live in the region around us,” HH Sheikh Mohammed said.
The projects are designed to create an integrated system of innovation platforms and an ideal smart environment that will attract the best talent from inside and outside the UAE. There will be innovation complexes and incubators for emerging ideas as well as technology laboratories and smart buildings in Dubai Internet City and Dubai Media City. The platform will include direct links to financing and marketing channels.
HH Sheikh Mohammed’s vision includes encouraging young pioneers to commit themselves to innovative projects, adding value to the national economy and boosting the number of patents registered for the UAE. The plan aims to boost the number of companies in the content, knowledge, technology, education, development and research sectors to 10,000 and to grow the number of people employed in these areas to 100,000.
HH Sheikh Mohammed also called on the private sector to contribute more to establishing the UAE a destination and capital for innovation. “Our innovation facilities will soon open their doors to every talented pioneers, whether they are from the UAE, from the Arab world, or any other nation around the globe. We will connect them with opportunity in the smartest innovation environment in the world,” HH Sheikh Mohammed said.
He added that Dubai Media City would witness tremendous changes during its transformation into a global hub for media and social media channels, attracting the best minds to develop new tools, create new content, conduct new research and develop new applications.
Dubai Internet City and Dubai Media City are home to nine specialised business districts within six key sectors: information technology, communication, media, education, biosciences and content. Their sustained growth reflects the success of Dubai in providing an ideal business environment that stimulates the knowledge economy.