”A common vision for Arab Digital Economy” is the bold plan driven by the Council of Arab Economic Unity, CAEU, at the League of Arab States to boost political and social stability in the Arab world through a digital economy.
Dr. Ali Mohammed Al-Khouri, Advisor to the Council of Arab Economic Unity, said that the initiative received the support of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE’s Armed Forces. The plan aims at digital inclusion, knowledge-based legislative and technology infrastructure, and public and private frameworks that will boost security, welfare, and prosperity for the Arab societies.
”The UAE’s support for the common Arab vision will promote a joint Arab action,” Al-Khouri said while stressing the importance of the role of technology as a tool to achieve the objectives of sustainable development and economic growth rates through the creation of investments opportunities, employment and the opening of new markets.
The UAE is recognized for its knowledge-based approach and empowerment of youth. The UAE has been fostering a number of initiatives for skill development like the “One Million Arab Coders Project” and the e-learning platform offering more than 50 million Arab students across the world access to education among other projects that support sustainable development for Arab societies.
The CAEU is the execution arm for the plan and for boosting cooperation with international organizations working in the field. The CAEU delegation met with Mourad Wahba, Assistant Secretary-General, Assistant Administration and Regional Director for the Arab States at the United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, with senior officials from the United Nation’s Division for Public Institutions and Digital Government. Al-Khouri noted that the investments directed towards the Arab regions by the UNDP are worth US$1 billion.
“This initiative will be the foundation to promote the social and economic security for the Arab societies. That is why it is important to cooperate with international organizations and bring together Arab and international thinkers and practitioners for the development of the strategy. Such involvement will ensure global influence and introduction”, Al-Khouri stated.
“This is a new model for developing the Arab world’s economies to tackle global challenges. The UAE is putting its expertise to use to boost sustainable development in the Arab states,” he said in conclusion.
The strategy will be presented at an international conference to be hosted in Abu Dhabi on 16th and 17th December 2018. It is expected to produce a digital economy and transformation projects. The outputs will be presented to the Arab Leaders at the Arab Summit scheduled in March 2019 in Tunisia.
The World Bank noted the importance of the strategy in paving the way for inclusive economic development opportunities in the Arab world. The United Nations, the UNDP, and the World Bank support the initiative and the CAEU for its work on the comprehensive development and enhancement of cooperation between the Arab states.