Saudi Arabia ranked 16th out of 67 countries in the World Competitiveness Ranking Image Credit: Reuters

Dubai: The Saudi technology sector experienced robust growth in the second quarter, witnessing a significant increase in registrations for artificial intelligence (AI) technologies and cloud computing services.

Quarterly business sector bulletin, the country issued 8,948 official identification cards for AI technologies during the quarter, marking a notable rise from 5,820 issued in the same period last year. There were 2,358 documents issued for cloud computing services, up from 1,648 year-over-year, according to the ministry of commerce.

This surge underscores Saudi Arabia’s strong global competitiveness, as evidenced by its 16th place ranking out of 67 countries in the World Competitiveness Ranking by the International Institute for Management Development. Riyadh led in AI technology permits with 5,492, followed by Mecca with 1,789, the Eastern Province with 939, Medina with 254, and Asir with 115.

The World Competitiveness Ranking is a comprehensive annual report and worldwide reference point on the competitiveness of global economies.

There was a notable increase in the arts, entertainment, and leisure sector, which saw 20,465 commercial records issued in the quarter, up from 16,438 in the previous year. The electronic games sector also expanded significantly, recording 336 registrations compared to 260 in the same quarter the previous year, marking a 29 per cent growth.

Other sectors also showed positive growth: ground passenger transport services in cities and suburbs saw issuances rise to 8,213 from 6,227, short-term accommodation services increased by 22 per cent to 22,435 business records, and the mining and quarrying sector registered 7,871, up from 6,671. The pharmaceuticals and medical products business recorded a 34 per cent increase in issuance, issuing 1,155 commercial records compared to 859 previously.