More than SR8 billion ($2.13 billion) of foreign investment has poured into Saudi Arabia’s IT market, Assistant Minister Munir El-Desouki has revealed.
Speaking as part of a virtual Fintech tour, El-Desouki argued the telecom sector in the Kingdom is also now becoming attractive to outside investors.
“With the unlimited support it received from our government and in partnership with the private sector, we were able to jump the Kingdom’s ranking in internet speeds from the 105th to the 6th globally,” he said.
“We invested in minds to bridge the digital skills gap. We trained more than 55,000 male and female trainees in qualitative digital skills, as part of the Future Skills initiative,” he added.
El-Desouki said the ministry has helped increase the Saudization rate in the sector to 58 percent, and has also seen the participation rate of women rise from 7 percent in 2017 to 28 percent.
The ministry launched the National Information Technology Development Program with a budget of SR25 billion to strengthen the telecom system, increase its effectiveness, and ensure its sustainability.
The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology is determined to raise the contribution of the digital economy to the Kingdom’s domestic product, Vice Minister of Communications and Information Technology Haytham Al-Ohali said.
He added that the ministry actively contributes with their partners in the government and private sectors to the development of the financial technology market.