UAE to invest in ICT start-ups

UAE TRA dedicates $5.9m to aiding UAE entrepreneurs

Tags: EntrepreneurInvestmentTelecommunications Regulatory Authority - UAEUnited Arab Emirates
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UAE to invest in ICT start-ups The UAE TRA is investing $5.9m into aiding UAE entrepreneurs develop their businesses.
By  Roger Field Published  June 16, 2011

The UAE's TRA has dedicated AED22 million ($5.9 million) funding to develop early-stage homegrown ICT projects this year.

The investment will be delivered through the TRA's ICT Fund initiative. It will be used to fund research and development centres in partnership with universities and research organisations in the UAE, as well as individual research projects in various universities in the country.

Part of the funding will be used to establish "physical infrastructure" of applied R&D centres in academic and research institutions and local companies, according to Dr. Eesa Bastaki, CEO of ICT Fund. He added that this will support "basic research and applied R&D initiatives" with the aim of developing new ICT products and services.

The fund will focus on wireless technology, security and encryption, broadband technology, satellite communications, sensor area networks, and areas of "vital national interest" related to ICT, Bastaki said.

"We will invest heavily this year; we have planned to fund a myriad of research projects, several start-ups, and many incubators. The forecasted investment-spending for R&D in 2011 is AED 22 million for research projects." Bastaki said.

He added that the "core objectives" of the fund are to support research and development, incubators and start-up businesses, as well as improving educational opportunities in the UAE.

The idea behind the fund is to help foster a "self reliant knowledge-based economy in the UAE", according to Bastaki.

"By doing so, we will create an ‘ICT eco-system' in the UAE, meaning we will create an industry that can complete its lifecycle without having to reach beyond the borders of the country in terms of support or resources," Bastaki said.

"We will fund the research and development; we will invest in start-ups that will produce products made in the UAE which will be sold globally."

R&D institutions that want to access funding from the initiative must be a legal entity such as a university, research institute or company and must have majority UAE ownership.

Applicants will be partly evaluated on the degree to which their proposal is likely to directly benefit the UAE ICT sector, according to ICT Fund.

2730 days ago
Satish Raj

This is great news and very close to my profession ...I am working as a ICT consultant for more than 10 years and nice to see that this is being recognised. The initiative is in the right and positive direction

2734 days ago
Vinod Mehra

Great initiative. The region needs more such initiatives to reflect a global presence and the good things is the region is flushed with funds but need direction

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