Sunday 24, December 2017 by Jessica Combes

Fourth Industrial Revolution a trillion-riyal opportunity for KSA


The Fourth Industrial Revolution KSA Leadership Summit was recently hosted by strategic management consultancy A.T. Kearney in partnership with Al-Aghar, a Saudi Arabian think tank, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The gathering, which included industrial and technology leaders, policymakers, and academics, aimed to define the key initiatives that will enable the Kingdom to benefit from the advances in technology of the Fourth Industrial Revolution in order to further diversify and strengthen Saudi Arabia’s economy.

During the summit, the analysis provided by A.T. Kearney revealed that the Fourth Industrial Revolution offers the opportunity to add more than SAR 1 trillion to the Saudi economy. The main gain, close to SAR 900 billion, will come from indirect contributions mainly from wholesale, retail and manufacturing sectors.

The summit focused on some of the most critical issues and opportunities the country faces, and how best to benefit from the synthesis of physical, biological and digital technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The event was conducted in the presence of HH Prince Turki bin Saud bin Mohammed Al Saud, President of King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), HH Prince Faisal bin Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Saud, Chairman of the Steering Committee of Al Aghar Group, Dr. Ibrahim M. Babelli, Deputy Minister for Sectoral Development, Ministry of Economy and Planning, Dr. Lama Sulaiman Vice Chair, Jeddah Chamber of Commerce, Dr. Mohammed Almajed, CEO of Taqnia Digital Manufacturing, Ihab Foudeh, Public Sector General Manager Microsoft Middle East,,Eng.Tarek Noureldin, Senior Operations Director KSA, Philips Lighting, Andreea Zugravu, Principal, A.T. Kearney, and World Economic Forum Secondee 4IR Future of Production, Mauricio Zuazua, Partner, A.T. Kearney, and Lead Partner World Economic Forum Future of Production, Rudolph Lohmeyer, Vice President, A.T. Kearney Global Business Policy Council.

“The Kingdom has made great strides and is heavily investing in technology to diversify its economy away from a reliance on oil. Under the vision of HRH Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, technology is high up on the agenda for the kingdom. The Fourth Industrial Revolution Future of Production can add significant value to the kingdom and will significantly impact the way we live our lives and do business,” said Mauricio Zuazua, Partner, A.T. Kearney.

The sessions addressed the most important issues and opportunities for the Kingdom's economy in light of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, including localization, trade and investment; technology and innovation; small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs); and human capital and skills. The participating Saudi leaders and international experts defined key initiatives required to capture the identified value.

"We look forward to working on the necessary preparations for Saudi Arabia to take on a role in the new digital economy. We also hope that this workshop provides a launching point for discussion and an opportunity to realise financial benefits, results and the economic stability these technologies offer to the Saudi economy,” said Zuhair Maghrabi, General Manager of Al Aghar Group, commenting on the importance of this work and the effective role it plays for the Saudi economy.

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