What Is Saudi Data And Ai Authority (Sdaia) And Why Does It Matter
Last Updated on November 13, 2023 by Ameer Hamza
AI is on the cusp of revolutionizing the Saudi Arabian economy. International Data Corporation predicts that the AI adoption rate in both the private and public sectors will increase over the next few years. The Kingdom’s ambitious plans for the future of its economy hinge on AI-powered systems, including ambitious futuristic infrastructure projects. SDAIA has taken the lead in encouraging the widespread use of AI throughout the Kingdom. Its efforts have done wonders to pave the way for the growth of a mature AI ecosystem in Saudi Arabia.
What is Saudi Data And Ai Authority (SDAIA)?
SDAIA was officially set up by a royal decree on August 30, 2019. There are three other groups that work with the authority. Two of them were set up by royal order on the same day. The two groups in question are the National Center for Artificial Intelligence and the National Data Management Office. The third group is the National Information Center, which is already in operation. With the theme “Data is the Oil of the 21st Century,” SDAIA launched its brand identity on March 4, 2020, at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Riyadh.
Why Does Saudi Data And Ai Authority Matter?
SDAIA aims to build a future that employs data and artificial intelligence to enable digital transformation and pave the way for the achievement of its 2030 goals. In December 2022, Makkah’s governor, Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, and the head of SDAIA, Abdullah Al-Ghamdi, signed a memorandum of understanding in December 2022. SDAIA aims to use analytics and AI models in studies and indicators that support Makkah’s efforts and work by developing the content of platforms that support decision-making and observation.
To help realize Vision 2030’s objectives and fully develop the Kingdom, SDAIA and IBM also announced a strategic agreement in September 2022. With the signing of this agreement, the carbon capture and industrial sectors in Saudi Arabia will be given a boost toward the widespread use of AI. SDAIA seeks to support the Kingdom’s sustainability and industrialization goals by pinpointing high-value applications of AI and machine learning to issues faced by public and private sector organizations in the Kingdom. The first use case under this agreement will be a collaboration with the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Energy. This was announced at the second Global AI Summit in the Kingdom. SDAIA, IBM, and the Ministry of Energy will utilize AI technology in order to detect, map, and eventually reduce carbon emissions across the nation.
Recently, Saudi Arabia has risen to become a leading voice in the G20 and a major player in the global AI economic scene. Saudi Arabia’s participation in international discussions on AI policy has been a liberalizing force. Saudi Arabia has not only hosted important G-20 meetings, but it also recently hosted a successful global summit on artificial intelligence. This summit brought together government officials, business executives, academic leaders, and leaders from civil society. Also, according to Mishari Almishari, head of the strategy office for SDAIA, the organization intends to train 25,000 data and AI specialists, propelling Saudi Arabia into the top 10 countries for data and AI.