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UAE is Gulf's most ICT prepared country – report

UAE best in ME for using technology to create better eco-social environment

The UAE ranked as highest in the region for use of ICT to promote socio-economic growth.
The UAE ranked as highest in the region for use of ICT to promote socio-economic growth.

The UAE is the top country in the Middle East for using technology to create a better economic and social environment, according to a new report published by the World Economic Forum.

The Global Information Technology Report 2009-2010 ranks the UAE as the 23rd best country out of 133 survey on how it uses information technology to create a "more economically, environmentally and socially sustainable world in the aftermath of one of the most serious economic crises in decades".

Globally, Sweden came out on top, followed by Singapore and Denmark.

In the Gulf region, the UAE was placed six places above Bahrain, which edged Qatar into 29th place.

Saudi Arabia was ranked at number 38 while Oman was rated the 50th most ICT prepared country. Kuwait was the lowest ranked GCC nation at number 76.

Bahrain was the highest climber of the Gulf nations in this year's rankings and over a three year period, having gained 21 places since 2006.

Kamal Ahmed, chief operating officer of the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB), said the kingdom's rise reflected a commitment to ICT as both a sector in its own right and an enabler of continued economic growth, modernisation and competitiveness.

"Sweden, Singapore and Denmark's superior capacity to leverage ICT as an enabler of sustainable, long-term economic growth is built on similar premises, relating with a long-standing focus placed by governments and private sectors alike on education, innovation and ICT access and diffusion," said Irene Mia, senior economist of the Global Competitiveness Network at the World Economic Forum and co-editor of the report.

"The success of these countries underlines the importance of a joint ICT vision, an implementation, by all the different stakeholders in a society for a country to take full advantage of ICT advances in its daily life and overall competitiveness strategy."