Business

Masdar City attracts global, local innovation giants

Abu Dhabi: Masdar City, the sustainable urban development in the United Arab Emirates’ capital, Abu Dhabi, will play a key role in the global green recovery of COVID-19 as it continues to add sustainability-oriented innovation and technology ventures. The number of companies in the city’s free zone increased by 26 percent in 2020, indicating the important role of the city and its offering to companies led by innovations, including G42 Healthcare, whose laboratories and testing centers are central to the pandemic response from the UAE. The figures highlight the essential need for innovation to promote the green transition through the development and commercialization of new technologies. Masdar City is the only planned and approved research and development group (Abu Dhabi) in Abu Dhabi and is now home to more than 900 companies, ranging from multinational companies and SMEs to home businesses. These companies are developing groundbreaking technological solutions to some of the world’s most pressing environmental challenges, in the key sectors of energy, water, artificial intelligence, health, space, agriculture and mobility. “The UAE leadership has made a long-standing commitment to progressive climate action and recognizes the integral part that innovation plays in promoting the global green recovery,” said Masdar City CEO Abdulla Balalaa. “The COVID-19 pandemic further underlined the link between public health and climate change. More than ever before, we see the critical importance of the green recovery. It is the only way to achieve sustainable development, and facilitating innovation in key sectors is a fundamental aspect of this journey, helping us to lead in Masdar City. Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Masdar City has continued to welcome new partners, including executives from the high-tech sector, the Advanced Technology Research Council (ATRC), which is shaping the R&D strategy in Abu Dhabi , together with its pillar entities, the Technology Innovation Institute (TII) and ASPIRE, and will continue to welcome local and global partners in the coming months.

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The ATRC joins an already impressive group of innovation-driven companies, including: Honeywell Innovation Center, an innovation and knowledge exchange center designed to promote digital transformation in the oil, gas, petrochemical and infrastructure sectors; G42 Healthcare, which conducted the first pan-Arab clinical trials for an inactivated COVID-19 vaccine and established the region’s largest and most advanced Omics Center of Excellence, home to a series of Omics projects; the International Agency for Renewable Energy (IRENA) – the first intergovernmental organization located in the Middle East; the UAE space agency, which made history earlier this year by sending a spacecraft to Mars’ Orbit, making the UAE the first Arab nation, and one of only five in the world to reach it; the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC); and companies such as Siemens, Siemens Energy, Saint-Gobain and Tabreed, as well as the core tenant, Masdar (Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company). Masdar City is also an active supporter of the United Arab Emirates’ National Artificial Intelligence Strategy 2031, which identifies the growth potential associated with AI, and has sought to establish the country as an incubator for AI innovation. Masdar City this year welcomed the first students at the first research-based university in the world dedicated to the study of AI, the Mohammed Bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI). Masdar City also houses a growing number of AI specialist businesses contributing to a projected boost of $ 15.7 billion to the global economy by 2030 and $ 320 billion to the Middle East economy. Already established as a leading innovation center in the region, Masdar City will continue to work with its partners to advance key sector solutions, which also support the UAE’s industrial sector to increase its contribution to AED 300 billion gross. increase domestic product (GDP). 2031