IBM To Upskill 100,000 Saudis In AI, ML, And More


IBM to upskill 100,000 Saudis in AI, Machine learning, cybersecurity and implement 66 AI projects

The Saudi Ministry of Communications and Information Technology signed an MOU with IBM, a global digital tech firm to upskill 100,000 Saudis over the next five years. The MOU includes eight innovative initiatives to bolster KSA’s position as a hub of technology and innovation in the MENA region.

The initiatives include artificial intelligence, Machine Learning, cybersecurity, joint research, innovation accelerators, policy laboratory, IBM’s cloud and open tech centres for software interoperability.

The MOU’s signing coincided with the U.S. President’s visit to KSA, as per Saudi News Agency. The Deputy Minister for International Cooperation and Partnerships, Mr Issam Al-Thukair, and Mr Fahad Alanazi, General Manager, IBM Saudi Arabia, signed the agreement in the presence of H.E. Eng. Abdullah Alswaha, Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Mr. Jonathan Adashek, IBM’s Chief Marketing and Communications Officer & Senior Vice President, Marketing and Communications, Mr. Saad Toma, General Manager, IBM Middle East, and Ms Dina Abo-Onoq, Managing Partner, IBM Consulting Saudi Arabia.

Mr Issam Al-Thukair, Deputy Minister for International Cooperation and Partnerships, affirmed that the memorandum with IBM is an activation of the Ministry’s efforts towards establishing a supportive and enabling digital environment for the theme “Connected today, innovative tomorrow” and promoting investment opportunities provided by the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Within the framework to be established, IBM will provide training and development programs for up to 100,000 Saudis over five years, which will boost the Kingdom’s leadership, with the Kingdom holding the ninth position globally in digital capabilities, according to the World Economic Forum.

“Our collaboration with the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology will help identify, co-create, and co-develop innovative applications to provide the Kingdom with access to advanced technology aligned to its Saudi Vision 2030 objectives. Our programs also reinforce IBM’s commitment to developing future skills of the Kingdom in critical areas where the use of technologies is fundamental,” said Mr Fahad Alanazi, General Manager, IBM Saudi Arabia.

As per the agreement, the number of artificial intelligence projects expected to be implemented within entities operating in the public sector will reach approximately 66 projects.

IBM will hold 100 workshops with government agencies based on the “Design Thinking” methodology and train 600 public sector employees in the accelerator established.