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Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum interacting with senior government officials and representative of private companies during the launching of 'Create Apps in Dubai’ initiative Image Credit: DMO

Dubai: Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, on Wednesday launched ‘Create Apps in Dubai’.

According to the Government of Dubai Media Office, it is an initiative of the Higher Committee of Future Technology Development and Digital Economy, aimed at fostering an innovation-driven ecosystem for digital applications in the emirate and turning Dubai into one of the world’s most attractive destinations for business opportunities by 2025.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed said the launch of ‘Create Apps in Dubai’ forms part of implementing the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to develop initiatives that can transform Dubai into a leader in the global digital sector and create a new future shaped by advanced technologies and sciences.

Since launching Dubai Internet City, the emirate’s strategic investments in the digital sector have seen it becoming an important player in the global technological landscape, he said.

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Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum standing for photograph with senior government officials and representative of private companies Image Credit: DMO

Sheikh Hamdan said: “The digital transformation sweeping the world and the exponential growth of cutting-edge digital applications and platforms have created a new global competition for technological leadership. Dubai seeks to be at the forefront of this global race by providing a platform for fostering the development of 1,000 highly-skilled UAE nationals whose ideas and innovation will create a vibrant applications sector in Dubai.”

Public private partnetship

The ‘Create Apps in Dubai’ initiative overseen by the Dubai Chamber for Digital Economy with the support of government entities and technology companies, seeks to train a select group of 1,000 UAE nationals in partnership with the private sector in Dubai. The initiative will identify priority areas and support development plans aimed at empowering and enabling these UAE nationals to play key roles in realising the country’s digital vision. Further, the initiative seeks to triple the number of app creators by 2025 and support 100 new national projects for developing cutting-edge apps that will be made available in digital app stores over the next 24 months.

Sheikh Hamdan met with developers of apps targeted at the global market in the fields of healthcare, education, entrepreneurship and others, as part of engagements aimed at promoting exchange of ideas among experts, innovators and developers. By encouraging greater sharing of digital and technological expertise, Dubai seeks to enhance its position as a global launchpad for future-oriented technologies.

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Senior officials

Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, and Chairman of the Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy; Helal Saeed AlMarri, Director General of Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism; Hamad Obaid AlMansoori, Director General of the Dubai Digital Authority; Khalfan Belhoul, CEO of the Dubai Future Foundation; Ahmed bin Byat, Vice Chairman of the Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy; Malek Al Malek, Director General of the Dubai Development Authority and Chairman of TECOM Group; Arif Amiri, CEO of DIFC; and Saeed Al Gergawi, Vice President of the Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy attended the launch of the ‘Create Apps in Dubai’ initiative.

Big numbers

With global smartphone sales revenues crossing $448 billion and two million new applications and games created in 2021, growth and innovation in the sector has been steadily gathering momentum. Users spent more than $160 billion on applications while the number of downloads of applications hit 230 billion in 2021, creating vast new opportunities for investors, entrepreneurs and technology professionals.


The number of financial and business applications downloaded in the Middle East and Africa region exceeded 157 million in 2021, an increase of 182% since 2018, while user spending in the top 25 electronic apps increased by 6.5 times compared to 2018. Dubai seeks to leverage new growth opportunities in the sector by creating a strong digital infrastructure, developing a legislative framework that supports the development of apps, and introducing government incentives to accelerate the sector’s economic growth.