Amazing Progress of Technology in Arab Nations
Information and communications technology is growing at a rapid pace in the Middle East particularly Saudi Arabia. This oil-rich nation is a budding market for information technology. The same goes for telecommunications. It is expanding services and facilities under the guidance of the Telecommunications and Information Technology Ministry in cooperation with the privately-owned Saudi Telecommunications Company.
Saudi’s telephone system and mobile phone network have also risen rapidly. The Communications and Information Technology Committee oversees all Internet operations. The Kingdom has already launched Saudi- manufactured space satellites for communications and surveillance/observation purposes. The King Fahd Satellite Communications City located in Jeddah is the biggest in the Middle East region. On the other hand, King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology is an autonomous scientific institution that functions as the national science agency of the KSA.
Social media networking sites (FACEBOOK, TWITTER, LINKED IN and GOOGLE) have contributed immensely to the advancement of communications technology not only in Saudi Arabia but the rest of the Gulf Area. All these social media platforms have been included in mobile applications.
United Arab Emirates
The UAE is moving towards the status of becoming an international technology hub. There is an aggressive initiative geared towards the establishment of mobile e-services. The City of Dubai is connected by way of fiber optic network and speedy wireless Internet with maximum speed of 300 Megabits per Second.
Dubai Internet City is an IT park transformed into a free economic zone and strategic center for private corporations seeking out up-and-coming markets in the region. Companies acquire benefits pertaining to ownership, customs duties and taxation. These are ensured by laws for 50-year duration. One specific model is 100 percent foreign ownership just like other economic zones in the Emirates. Thus, numerous information technology conglomerates have moved to this hub like IBM, Oracle, Microsoft, Hewlett & Packard, Cisco, Sun Microsystems, Siemens, and Nokia.
Qatar has embarked on remarkable progress in Information technology infrastructure and telecommunications during the last decade. The country’s National Geographic Information System (GIS) is a model worldwide. Qatar maintains an advantage over other countries because of its small population and land area. It can invest in modern technologies with little capital compared to large and developed nations like the United States. Qatar earns large revenues from natural gas and oil to finance its technology projects.
In 2014, the Exxon Mobil Research Qatar (EMQR) filed new patent applications recording new technology innovations particularly in the field of Augmented Reality Training Programs as well as detection of hydrocarbon leakages. Qatar’s private sector emphasizes on IT development specifically for small and medium enterprises for cost reduction and increase in profits. These are E-Commerce, Cloud Computing, and Web presence.
Qatar’s Ministry of Information and Communications Technology has designed a National ICT Plan for 2015 coined as “Advancing the Digital Agenda” It will serve as guide for their IT thrusts for the rest of this year. This program is aligned with the country’s National Vision 2030 while specific targets are in accordance with the National Development Strategy of Qatar from 2011 until 2016.
Kuwait is pushing its IT infrastructure, telecommunications and use of social media parallel with that of its neighbors in the Middle East. The strategy is to enhance services, widen networks and strengthen the regulatory environment governing these industries. In the most recent Global information Technology Publication, the World Economic Forum positioned Kuwait #632 out of 142 nations worldwide in terms of Information Technology network promptness index. Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain were all in the top 40 countries.
According to the WEF, this marked improvement was brought about by the more robust political conditions, better regulation and amplified levels of individual and business use. However, the Kuwaiti Government needs to boost legislation more and spread out broadband range. Just like the other states in the Gulf, Kuwait must expand IT saturation and implement large-scale digital techniques. Competitiveness will generate economic development and political stability. Kuwait created the Central Agency for Information Technology as overseer of its IT agenda and E–programs.
Global Information and Communication Technology companies have been encouraged to operate in Bahrain because of the country’s very tolerant ICT polices and noninterventionist markets. Excellent information technology infrastructure is also one of the reasons why foreign firms in the IT and Communications sectors have flocked to Bahrain.
Bahrain is the sole deregulated telecommunications marketplace in the Middle East with the greatest access to high-growth markets in the Gulf region. It has impressive credentials such as the first country in the Middle East to make digital telephone switches in 1992. Bahrain was also the first to launch Web services in 1995 and also the prime-mover in liberalizing telecommunications (2004). This country has stringent intellectual property legislation to safeguard intellectual capital and produce the environment required for outsourcing of software development.
All in all, these five affluent nations in the Middle East have achieved significant milestones in ITC and Social Media progression.