UAE President Issues Law Establishing an Artificial Intelligence Council – Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the president and ruler of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, has enacted a law to establish the Artificial Intelligence and Advanced Technology Council (AIATC). This newly formed council is tasked with crafting and executing policies related to artificial intelligence in the realms of research, infrastructure, and investments.
As per a statement from the Abu Dhabi government, the council will be responsible for supervising the application and advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) policies and strategies in the areas of research, infrastructure, and investments. In addition to formulating policies, the council will engage in partnerships with both local and global entities to create plans and research programs.
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This initiative is designed to elevate Abu Dhabi’s standing in the field of artificial intelligence, aligning with the emirate’s broader endeavors to establish itself as a focal point for investments, collaborations, and talent in the advanced technology sector. The president issued a resolution appointing Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed Al Nahyan as the Chairman of the AIATC, and Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan as the Vice Chairman.
Embracing numerous technological strides, the UAE government endeavors to establish the nation as a worldwide technology hub conducive to burgeoning startups. In 2018, the Emirates Blockchain Strategy was unveiled, with the objective of promoting the widespread adoption of blockchain technology.
In March 2022, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai, instituted the Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA) to oversee the regulation of cryptocurrencies and digital assets. Additionally, in July 2022, the country intensified its focus on the metaverse, launching the Dubai Metaverse Strategy, which aims to foster over 40,000 virtual jobs by the year 2030.
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More recently, the nation has prioritized the advancement of AI technology. On August 15, 2023, the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) initiated the issuance of commercial licenses for AI and Web3 enterprises with a substantial 90% subsidy. Mohammad Alblooshi, the CEO of DIFC Innovation Hub, stated that providing these licenses was a deliberate endeavor to “attract more global talent and investment to the region.”
In addition to the discounted commercial licenses, the country has also established a dedicated free economic zone tailored for Web3 and AI service providers. On October 19, 2023, the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) introduced the RAK Digital Assets Oasis (DAO) specifically catering to Web3, digital assets, and AI.