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New infrastructure region reflects AWS’s long-term commitment to meeting high demand for cloud services in Saudi Arabia and across the Middle East, said the company. Image Credit: AWS

Dubai: Amazon company Amazon Web Services (AWS), on Monday, announced plans to invest more than $5.3 billion (approx. SAR19.88 billion) in Saudi Arabia. Moreover, the American tech giant will launch an AWS infrastructure region in Saudi Arabia in 2026.

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AWS has also said it will establish two innovation centres, and the investment will include upskilling students and local developers. It will help the next generation of local talent with access to cloud computing skills.

AWS Regions are separate geographic areas consisting of multiple, physically separated, isolated availability zones connected with low latency, high throughput, and highly redundant networking.

The new AWS Region will give developers, startups, entrepreneurs, and enterprises, as well as healthcare, education, gaming, and nonprofit organisations, greater choices for running their applications and serving end users from data centres located in Saudi Arabia, ensuring that customers who want to keep their content in-country can do so.

“The partnership with AWS and their announcement of an AWS Region, backed by a $5.3 billion investment, ignites a new era of technological excellence and innovation for the Kingdom,” said Abdullah Alswaha, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Minister of Communications and Information Technology.

Digital transformation

The new AWS Region will consist of three Availability Zones at launch, adding to the existing 105 Availability Zones across 33 geographic regions globally.

“Today’s announcement supports the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s digital transformation with the highest levels of security and resilience available on AWS cloud infrastructure, helping serve fast-growing demand for cloud services across the Middle East,” said Prasad Kalyanaraman, vice president of Infrastructure Services at AWS.

Kalyanaraman said, “The new AWS Region will enable organisations to unlock the full potential of the cloud and build with AWS technologies like compute, storage, databases, analytics, and artificial intelligence, transforming how businesses and institutions serve their customers.”

With today’s announcement, AWS has plans to launch 18 more Availability Zones and six more AWS Regions in Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Thailand, and the AWS European Sovereign Cloud.

Each Availability Zone has independent power, cooling, and physical security and is connected through redundant, ultra-low-latency networks. AWS customers focused on high availability can design their applications to run in multiple Availability Zones to achieve even greater fault tolerance.

To support the growth in cloud adoption across the country, AWS said it would continue to scale its training programs and is launching a new upskilling program, ‘AWS Saudi Arabia Women’s Skills Initiative,’ in partnership with Skillsoft Global Knowledge. It will train up to 4,000 women on AWS Cloud Practitioner Essentials, at no charge, through classroom training with AWS-certified professionals, helping women jumpstart a career in cloud computing.