Digital market in the United Arab Emirates- statistics & facts

The fourth industrial revolution has led to unprecedented technological advancement worldwide. A country’s competitiveness will be defined by its ability to harness new technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain, robotics, the Internet of Things (IoT), and others on their digital transformation journey. By 2023, the spending on technologies and services enabling such transformation worldwide was expected to reach more than two trillion U.S. dollars. These technologies have provided industries with opportunities to enhance economic output and improve the quality of life. Such change is also highly disruptive, drastically transforming business models, interactions, and employment. The Gulf Cooperation Council, especially the UAE, has taken great strides in digitalization, which is an essential step towards digital transformation. By 2025, the revenue from the AI market in the MENA region was forecasted to reach more than one billion U.S. dollars.

 The state of digitalization of the UAE market

The UAE recognized the importance of digitalization and the role of ICT in achieving a digitally transformed economy early on. Initiatives such as UAE’s Vision 2021, have focused on transitioning the economy to a knowledge-based one. Efforts to adopt digital technology to change business models and the overall customer experience have been prioritized, thus providing new revenue and opportunities. The UAE digital market has exhibited such a shift, as the way of doing business is transforming. Payments, for instance, are increasingly digitalized, thus requiring less contact, time, and effort. Around a third of online customers preferred making mobile payments. Moreover, many e-services have emerged creating new experiences for consumers. This not only includes the retail sector but government and public services as well. About two-thirds of government services and education transactions were online in 2019.

 The future of the digital market post COVID-19 

The global COVID-19 pandemic poses uncertainties with regards to digital markets, with the majority of international digital decision-makers being optimistic about the effect of the outbreak on the pace of digital transformation. (1134413). In the UAE, technology played a vital role in the government’s response to the pandemic. It is expected that investment in ICT will pick up after the crisis. On the consumer level, citizens are adopting more digital activities ranging from video conferences and, e-learning to online grocery shopping, with a high intent to continue such behavior after the crisis.  

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Digital market in the United Arab Emirates

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