Digital Egypt strategy calls for investment in tech hubs, innovation

As part of its Digital Egypt strategy, the Egyptian government is nurturing innovation and entrepreneurship, particularly for e-commerce and emerging tech like AI. This is the third story in CIO Middle East's series on Digital Egypt's three pillars: digital transformation; skills and training; and innovation.

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The Egyptian government is ramping up investments in the country’s start-up ecosystem as part of its Digital Egypt strategy designed to encourage innovation and pave the way to a digital, knowledge-based economy. The growth of technology hubs to provide training for IT professionals, support for start-ups and development of emerging technology is key to the plan.

Egypt is a country of entrepreneurs. It has the second largest start-up ecosystem in the Gulf region, behind only the UAE, according to IDC. It ranks sixth in start-up "friendliness" and second in established entrepreneurship ecosystems within the Middle East and North Africa, outside of Israel, according to reports from entrepreneurship and start-up consultancies Enpact and WAMDA.

"In Egypt, there's a lot of emphasis on entrepreneurship and developing the skills necessary to succeed," says Dr. Eman Elshewy, IDC research manager. "A lot of this is taking place in the technology space, specifically among e-commerce and online businesses, but we're now beginning to see fintech, AI and even blockchain start-ups pop up, too."

Innovation is key to Digital Egypt strategy 

The Digital Egypt strategy was developed to strengthen and diversify the nation's economy by fostering technological knowledge and innovation, and rests on three pillars: digital transformation, digital skills and jobs, and digital innovation.

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