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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella highlights UAE’s advancing AI ecosystem

During his keynote, Nadella announced Microsoft's Azure OpenAI service, available from UAE cloud data centers.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella highlights UAE’s advancing AI ecosystem
[Source photo: Anvita Gupta/Fast Company Middle East]

UAE organizations are embracing AI, with the Middle East projected to have a $320 billion AI industry by 2030. The UAE is expected to lead in AI adoption, contributing nearly 14% to its GDP by 2030, according to a PwC report

The Middle East is expected to witness the growth of a $320 billion AI industry by 2030. The report also highlights that the UAE is poised to have the largest share of AI in its economy within the region, projected to make up nearly 14% of the GDP by 2030.

During his visit to the UAE to address the Microsoft ‘AI, a New Era’ event, Microsoft Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella emphasized the key role that AI plays in opportunities within the UAE’s digital economy.

“This new age of AI will drive innovation and has the potential to expand opportunity and growth worldwide – including in the UAE,” said Nadella. 

“It’s inspiring to see so many developers and businesses in the Emirates already applying AI to address business and societal challenges,” he adds.

Nadella unveiled the Azure OpenAI Service, launching later this month from Microsoft’s UAE cloud data centers. This service provides access to potent AI models, including GPT-4, Codex, and DALL-E 2, enabling the development of innovative applications like virtual assistants, content and code generation, and image editing.

Nadella also visited Saudi Arabia, and Microsoft has maintained a presence there for over 25 years. During his visit, he delivered a keynote address, saying, “It’s great to see so many Saudi organizations across the public and private sector already applying this technology to drive innovation and create new economic opportunities.”

The Gulf state has been ranked second among G20 nations and fourth globally in digital systems preparedness, a testament to its efforts toward achieving the Vision 2030 goals. Similarly, Nadella outlined how organizations in the UAE and Saudi Arabia are implementing AI for the betterment of society and the advancement of their key industries.

The Department of Health in Abu Dhabi is developing an AI-powered patient assistant on Azure to offer instant access to unified medical records and streamline appointment scheduling.

Also, G42 introduced Jais, a Large Language Arabic Model available through Azure Services. Nadella also highlighted DeepOpinion’s efforts to integrate AI models into existing automation workflows on Microsoft Azure and Microsoft Power Platform, aiming to minimize human errors and redundant tasks for organizations.

Saudi Airlines plans to launch “Saudia,” an AI travel companion using Azure OpenAI GPT-4 for personalized travel experiences. ACWA Power uses Azure AI and Microsoft’s Intelligent Data Platform for employee health and safety. The Ministry of Health adopted Azure AI for online medical consultation, critical case escalation, and AI diagnosis reports.

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