Dubai – 26 February 2021: Within its efforts to spread a culture of innovation, and as part of its participation in the UAE Innovation Month (21-27 Feb), Dubai Customs inaugurated the 2nd International Innovation, a joint initiative by the Ministry of Economy and Dubai Customs for the second consecutive year.
The forum aims to provide a periodic platform for innovators and inventors from inside and outside the country to interact with the relevant authorities from research centers, business incubators and private sector companies.
The forum will host dialogue and discussion sessions on applications of Artificial Intelligence (AI); modern innovation methodologies; intellectual property (IP) rights; patent mechanisms and procedures; and other areas related to the development of an environment that promotes innovation and empowerment of owners of innovative projects, to help enhance their competitiveness.
This year’s edition will also have an open contest in which all community members can share their creative ideas and innovations on 5-minute videos.
“The 2nd International Innovation Forum, organized in collaboration with Dubai Customs, serves as a platform for creative ideas and best practices and to raise awareness around the importance of innovation in making our lives better,” said H.E. Abdulla Al Saleh Undersecretary of the Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade & Industry. “By launching the Forum we aim to spread and promote a culture of innovation and creativity in the society, as innovation has become a key necessity for economic development and the improvement of the quality of the life for individuals. It is also important for the development of institutions and remains a major pillar in the UAE’s efforts to prepare for the next 50 years by maximizing development opportunities and finding innovative solutions to challenges in various sectors.”
Al Saleh pointed out the number of patent applications has significantly increased from 157 in 2000 to 1,917 in 2020. Number of industrial models has also increased in the last decade to touch 9,692 in 2020 from 2,481 in 2010.
These positive results have raised the UAE status on the competitiveness indexes including the Global Innovation Index 2020, which saw the UAE boost its standing by 2 ranks and improved to 34th globally, ranking number one in the Arab World for the fifth consecutive year. The UAE has also been ranked first in the in the region, and fifth globally on the Global Entrepreneurship Index (GEI) 2019, and 25th on the Global Competitiveness Index in 2019.
In a speech delivered at the virtual forum, H.E Ahmed Mahboob Musbaih, Director General of Dubai Customs said: “We are very happy with the close cooperation and fruitful partnership between Dubai Customs and the Ministry of Economy to encourage and motivate creative people and spread a culture of innovation in our society. Innovation has become one of the main paths to success in the UAE. Our target is to grow a generation of innovators in the UAE to achieve breakthroughs and advancements. The UAE Centennial Plan 2071 aims at investing in the future generations, by preparing them with the skills and knowledge needed to face rapid changes and to make the UAE the best country in the world by the next centennial in 2071. Inspired by the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai we work hard to maintain our outstanding positon worldwide.”
Musabih added; “Thanks to its advanced infrastructure and sophisticated systems and AI applications, Dubai Customs is efficiently capable of handling the increasing number of customs transactions in shorter time. Dubai Customs’ transactions grew 23% in 2020 against all odds to reach 16m compared to 13m in 2019, with 99.3% completed through smart channels. Dubai Customs developed 91 disruptive innovations to raise the total number of innovations to 237 in 2020. For this, we won 127 awards in 2020, and we were certified as a leading innovative organization by the Global Innovation Institute.”
On his part, Hussain Al Fardan, Dubai Customs’ Innovation Center senior manager said; “This year, our initiatives have a distinctive value and flavor as they coincide with the UAE’s Golden Jubilee celebrations. For this, we have invited a number of speakers, innovators and creative people from different sectors including education, government and private sectors to share their knowledge and exchange experiences.”
Dubai Customs’ Innovation center won the full grade accreditation from the Global Innovation Institute in 2021 for its Innovation Oasis Lab, and the Innovation digital platform has received 237 disruptive ideas from the employees since its inception.