Dubai Chamber explores public sector solutions for smart urban living

Sunday 13 March 2016

Dubai - MENA Herald: The Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry recently released a study on joint cooperation opportunities in the public sector for smart urban living between the business communities of Dubai and Hamburg. The study comes as part of the Chamber’s preparations to host the 5th Dubai Hamburg Business Forum in cooperation with the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce being held at the Chamber premises on March 22. The study pointed out that over the next two years, many government services will be moved online, facilitating greater business and consumer engagement with public entities, thus improving productivity and efficiency. Also, over the next five years, it is expected that cloud computing related infrastructure will drive the IT markets across the whole Middle East region with total IT spending rising from US$19.7 billion in 2014 to US$ 25.9 billion in 2019 as Saudi Arabia and the UAE are expected to be outperformers in the field. The study also revealed that currently Dubai is on the verge of a new revolution of integrating government services with the ‘Internet of Things’ (IOT) which is also the theme of the forum and complements Dubai’s strategic plan for 2016-2021 which provides the latest pillars for infrastructure in Dubai through owning a state-of-the art interconnected ICT equipment as the emirate’s IoT service provision is in partnership with Etisalat and du, the main telecom providers in the country. The study further stated that H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice-President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, launched a strategy to transform Dubai into a ‘Smart City’ whose overarching goal is to improve the life of every citizen in the UAE in the immediate future. This is the largest partnership of its kind between Dubai’s public and private sectors rendering large number of services to citizens, residents and visitors which are not restricted to governmental entities, but also to the many private sector companies and organisations such as airline companies, shopping malls, restaurants, hotels, banks and other service providing bodies. The Dubai Smart City strategy is based on three main goals: communication, integration and cooperation including six key pillars and 100 initiatives on transport, communications, infrastructure, electricity, economic services and urban planning. Under the strategy, many government services are set to become smart by 2017, said the study. The study highlighted that in April 2015, Dubai was recognised as the Smartest City in the MENA region as the emirate’s transformation to become a smart city was made possible by the largest and strongest partnership of its kind between the public and private sector (PPP) thanks to the collaborative effort across a number of sectors, including ICT, power, transportation, infrastructure, healthcare and government. Also, the high capacity and dense coverage of mobile and wire line broadband networks operated by Etisalat and Du, underpinned the ability of public and private sectors to ensure real-time connectivity and data transfer between their various infrastructures across the city, and deliver mobile and Internet based services to customers. Over the next 5 to 10 years, Dubai is expected to be one of the world’s smartest cities, it said. The study also shed light on the recent projects announced by Dubai government related to “Dubai Smart City Project” which includes the development of the world’s largest 5D Control Room, My Window to Dubai Program, creation of a unified control centre to improve traffic and transportation systems, smart electrical grid and meters, smart parks and beaches projects, and the Dubai Municipality’s recently implemented mandatory green building regulations in line with Dubai’s commitment to become the world’s leading Green City, and to make Dubai Expo 2020 an environmentally sustainable event. Today, entering the era of IoT has brought about changes on how companies manage physical assets, how consumers attend to their health and fitness, and how cities operate. IoT technology is expected to have substantial economic impact which urgently requires quantification and further definition as it will not only affect productivity and workspace concepts but deeply impact our daily lives. The Hamburg Metropolitan Region is one of Germany’s strongest economic regions and a central trading hub for Northern Europe. It has one of the world’s largest container ports and is an important growth engine for the region. It takes the leading role in Germany in such industries as aviation, logistics, IT, renewable energies and media, while also playing a major global role. Hamburg is the third largest site for the aviation industry worldwide, with major players Airbus and Lufthansa Technik operating large facilities, and more than 30,000 employees in the industry. Coming under the theme, "Internet of Things: Innovation to Connect", the Dubai Hamburg Business Forum in its 5th session will open up new horizons for fruitful cooperation and joint ventures in four important sectors including Public Sector Solutions for Smart Urban Living, Logistics, Health and Energy and is followed by field visits to emirate’s strategic economic and trade centres for the Hamburg delegation.

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