Global First-of-its-kind Russian Centre for Digital Innovations and ICT Launched in Dubai Internet City
19 June 2019
Dubai Internet City (DIC), the Middle East’s leading technology business community, today witnessed the launch of the first Russian Centre for Digital Innovations and Information and Communication Technologies. The centre, facilitated by the Russian Export Centre (REC), is one of the largest and only business support platforms for Russian tech firms outside Russia, and follows a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between DIC and REC during Gitex 2018.
The launch event drew the participation of His Excellency Mikhail Mamonov, Deputy Minister of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation, His Excellency Sergei Kuznetzov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to UAE, Malek Al Malek, CEO of TECOM Group, Abdulla Belhoul, Chief Commercial Officer of TECOM Group and Ammar Al Malik, Managing Director of Dubai Internet City.
The centre will serve as a springboard for Russian businesses looking to launch and expand their operations within the lucrative developing markets of the Middle East and North Africa region, while positioning Dubai as a destination for establishing businesses and discovering new opportunities.
Ammar Al Malik, Managing Director of DIC and Dubai Outsource City (DOC), said: “Since DIC’s inception, we have remained committed to providing business of all sizes with the platform required to innovate and grow. Transforming Dubai's Innovation Strategy into a reality is our mandate, as we strive to continue positioning Dubai as the region's foremost technology hub. The UAE government’s visionary plans and policies to develop its economy have yielded remarkable results over the years, the latest of which is the UAE’s fifth-place rank on the 2019 IMD World Competitiveness index.
“As a result of government efforts, Dubai has emerged as a world class business hub regionally and internationally and has succeeded in attracting and retaining some of the world’s brightest minds and most innovative companies. The launch of the new Russian digital centre in DIC adds an exciting new layer of activity to Dubai’s tech landscape by stimulating the economy and providing businesses new opportunities to leverage.”
He added: “Over the years, we have seen a host of organisations, ranging from global tech giants to exciting local startups set up their base within the community and achieve their fullest potential. We are keen to offer the same support and enabling infrastructure to Russian technology companies venturing into the region.”
Muhammad Shiha, CEO of Russian Centre of Digital Innovation & ICT, said: “An increasing number of Russian tech entrepreneurs and investors are pursuing new avenues of growth for their organisations. Our work is to build on their excellent reputation and the fact that they are reliable potential partners with good quality and value priced services. For this purpose, we have carefully chosen our location at DIC, the innovation hub of the region, and designed our services around its specific needs and based on a rigorous analysis of its demand."
The Russian Centre for Digital Innovations and Information and Communication Technologies will be home to Russian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and startups, as well as large Russian tech companies that operate on a global level. The centre is to offer a range of products, services and solutions in artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and cloud hosting, among others.
The opening of the centre comes at a time when relations between the UAE and Russia are thriving, following the declaration of a strategic partnership between the two countries in 2018. The volume of bilateral trade amounted to US$3 billion (AED11 billion) in 2018, a 21 per cent increase compared to the previous year, while the number of Russian tourists visiting the UAE reached 820,000 – a 64.8 per cent hike as a result of a new policy that grants Russian nationals a free 30-day visa on arrival.