DUBAI, 2nd November, 2023 (WAM) — The Dubai Business Forum, a transformative two-day event powered by Dubai Chambers, today highlighted the impact of advanced technologies on businesses and how the workforce can prepare for a future driven by digital transformation and Artificial Intelligence (AI).
The morning sessions on day two of the forum kicked off with a talk by Ted Souder, a former Senior Executive at Google. Souder stated that “Dubai is a place where the future happens” and spoke extensively about how businesses can capitalise on AI by maximising opportunities and minimising the risks involved. “AI itself is not new. Artificial intelligence has been around for 50-plus years. For the past 25 or 30 years, it has been powering some of our favourite tools and platforms,” he said.
Souder underlined the power of generative AI to scale up businesses, stating, “AI is going to unleash an entirely new generation of entrepreneurs, who will build high-impact businesses that will drive economic vitality and job creation for years to come.”
This was followed by a panel discussion titled “Investing in the Future of Prosperity” featuring Noor Sweid, Managing Partner at Global Ventures; Ronaldo Mouchawar, Vice President of Amazon Middle East and North Africa; and Kathy Xiaosi Gong, Co-Founder and CEO of Oneness Labs. The panellists discussed the need for the digitalisation of companies and delved into the causes of the digital divide while elaborating on possible solutions to bring about digital equity in businesses.
Sweid said that disruption in fintech, agritech, and food tech was already underway, stating, “Education can benefit immensely from digitalisation and new technologies, and food security could be tackled efficiently with the help of AI and other disruptive technologies such as blockchain and the metaverse.”
Ronaldo Mouchawar cited the example of small businesses selling on Amazon and how they can leverage AI to scale up in basic traditional commerce, adding: “Dubai offers a very conducive environment for growth, given its focus on new technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship.”
Speaking about the business environment in Dubai, Gong said she was very optimistic about the emirate’s future and believes it is a great place for entrepreneurs and startups to thrive. “Dubai and the MENA market remind me of China, the China story and the economic miracle it created,” she asserted.
The morning sessions concluded with a discussion featuring Issam Kazim, CEO of the Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DCTCM), and Brett Armitage, Chief Commercial Officer of Kerzner International.
Kazim and Armitage spoke about the tourism sector’s role as an important revenue generator. The session focused on how Dubai can serve as an example for economies around the world due to its success in creating a sustainable tourism industry that has emerged as a powerhouse for its economy.
Highlighting Dubai’s example as a playbook for the world, Kazim attributed the emirate’s success to the visionary leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, as well as the spirit of collaboration between the public and private sectors.
He highlighted Dubai’s approach of embracing a modern approach to architecture while keeping the city’s heritage alive as a key element of the emirate’s ambitious agenda. “Our aim is to become one of the top three most-visited destinations in the world. Dubai is a place for leisure, business, and health for people from around the world,” he said.
Armitage emphasised the importance of maintaining a balance in the hospitality landscape, stating, “We don’t want everything to be five-star, we want diversity. We have launched four-star properties like Bab Al Shams as well as five-star offerings like Atlantis the Palm.”
Hosted under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, the Dubai Business Forum brings together key stakeholders from the government and private sectors across the globe to explore strategic economic partnerships, develop international networks, and open new horizons for business, trade, and investments.