Qatar launches national digital development programme

27 March, 2022

Qatar has launched a national programme to accelerate its vision to adopt sustainable transformation across all sectors in line with the human development pillar of the Qatar National Vision 2030. The National Skilling Program was inaugurated yesterday by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology in partnership with Microsoft and elev8.

Qatar also launched the Digital Centre of Excellence at Msheireb Downtown Doha, a first in the region.

Minister of Communications and Information Technology H E Mohammed bin Ali Al Mannai, Minister of Transport H E Jassim Saif Ahmed Al Sulaiti, Minister of Youth and Sports H E Salah bin Ghanem Al Ali, senior government officials from ministries and other stakeholders were present during the launch.

Mashael Ali Al Hammadi, Acting Assistant Undersecretary of Information Technology, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, said: “We have reached a milestone in digital adoption, along with the country’s ambitions for sustainable development. The human development pillar of Qatar National Vision 2030 motivates us to empower and equip the people of Qatar with the skills needed to develop the country into an advanced society.”

“Digital adoption is important to Qatar’s vision, and that is why we are proud to launch this centre, which is the first in the region. The launch of this programme and the opening of the Digital Centre of Excellence will be key to providing advanced knowledge of modern technology and cloud computing in Qatar, proving Qatar’s digital readiness to use technology for its progress. It will provide a platform for startups to innovate and produce cloud solutions to support Qatar’s goals,” she added.

Meanwhile, Lana Khalaf, General Manager of Microsoft Qatar, said building digital skills are vital to any society’s economic development and growth. She said this is particularly true for Qatar as it is leading the digital transformation in the region.

Khalaf highlighted the World Economic Forum’s projection that by 2025, 85 million jobs worldwide would be displaced, while 97 million jobs will be created, of which 50% of employees will need reskilling.

Besides, digital transformation in AI, machine learning and Internet of Things (IoT) will create jobs like data scientists, AI specialist, Cloud architects, cybersecurity analysts and more.

“Microsoft is bringing all the latest technology to Qatar to accelerate this digital transformation across all the industries. We know that the biggest asset for any economy is its human capital. That is why to lead the digital transformation era will not depend on only technology but because it’s all about people,” Khalaf said.

According to Microsoft research, she disclosed that the Impact of launching the Microsoft global data centre in Qatar will bring 24,200 new jobs to Qatar by 2024. Khalaf added that more than 13,000 people in Qatar have been trained and certified across various roles and audiences in just 18 months. Moreover, the National Skilling Program aims to train 50,000 people by 2025.

Maria Balbas, President elev8, said elev8 chose Qatar as its new destination because it believes in the QNV 2030 and it will lead as an example for other nations, and the Digital Center for Excellence is already inspiring other countries who are looking to upskill their citizens digitally.

“Through the Digital Center, elev8 is bringing innovation and best practices to Qatar, empowering people with digital skills to become catalysts of transformation,” she added.

The Digital Centre of Excellence aims to develop the technical skills of students and those already in the workforce.

In cooperation with several leading international universities such as MIT xPro, the European Institute of Business Administration (INSEAD) and HEC Paris in Qatar, the Digital Center of Excellence will offer world-class training programmes.

The partnership with LinkedIn will complement the learning journeys of participants through workshops aimed at supporting and enabling them in their current and future jobs.