Invest Qatar partners with Deloitte to launch a report on digital skills

Invest Qatar partners with Deloitte to launch a report on digital skills By Fathimath Nasli - March 06, 2024
Invest Qatar partners with Deloitte to launch a report on digital skills

Invest Qatar partners with Deloitte to launch a report on digital skills and Qatar’s efforts to develop a future-ready workforce

The Investment Promotion Agency Qatar (Invest Qatar), in collaboration with Deloitte, the leading global professional service firm, has launched a joint report titled ‘Qatar's Digital Frontier: Mapping the Future of Skills.’ The comprehensive study delves into the significance of nurturing digital skills as a fundamental pillar for expediting digital transformation and provides valuable insights into the evolving landscape of the workforce in the digital era.
Following the successful inaugural edition of the world’s largest technology event in the region, Web Summit Qatar, the report was released, spotlighting the rapid rise of digital skills. These skills now serve as a driving force, fostering innovation, bridging disparities and propelling industries into an interconnected, technology-driven future. Additionally, it explores the swift expansion and integration of advanced technologies, which have reshaped the labour market. This digital transformation has resulted in a surge in the demand for digital competencies, poised to profoundly impact both current and future workforces. This impact was already witnessed in 2021-2022, with roles linked to generative artificial intelligence recording a substantial increase of over 44%, while Web3 and next-generation software saw a 40% increase, and mobility technologies witnessed a more than 15% rise.

Recognising this impact, Qatar has strategically prioritised the cultivation of digital skills in its digital transformation journey, aiming to bridge the gap between industry demands and available skills, crucial for unlocking opportunities and maintaining competitiveness. This commitment is evident through the launch of several initiatives spanning academia, research hubs and industrial partnerships aimed at equipping its workforce with the necessary expertise needed to adeptly navigate the evolving technological landscape.

Qatar's digital skills development ecosystem encompasses substantial government investments targeting various sectors, particularly in upskilling public workers, the youth population and segments at risk of digital exclusion. The nation also hosts esteemed local and international schools and universities, fostering the development of the future digital workforce, with over 2,000 STEM graduates annually. Additionally, Qatar has prioritised bolstering its research and innovation capabilities by embracing cutting-edge technologies and enabling institutions, such as the TASMU Accelerator, Digital Incubation Centre (DIC) and Smart Factory. Furthermore, Qatar is home to international technology players, which offer specialised programmes aimed at significantly enhancing digital skills and propelling the nation's technological advancement forward.

Sheikh Ali Alwaleed Al-Thani, CEO, Invest Qatar, said: "Recognising digitalisation as a catalyst for innovative transformation and new opportunities, rather than a disruptor to traditional businesses, has been fundamental to Qatar's successful digital transformation journey. This is evident in the diverse national efforts to empower a workforce capable of navigating the evolving landscape and meeting changing business demands. Today, Qatar is ranked 1st globally for its attractiveness to international students and the 4th most appealing destination globally for talent. Our joint report with Deloitte underscores Qatar’s forward-thinking approach and outlines the roadmap to unlock further opportunities, paving the way for foreign investors to capitalise on the transformative potential of digitisation.”

Ulrik Muller, Partner, Deloitte Middle East, said: “The growing need for digital skills is underscored by the concerted efforts of both the Qatari government and the private sector, steering major digitisation and infrastructure initiatives and driving innovation to remain competitive in a rapidly evolving digital economy. As such, prioritising skills for digital transformation is not only a strategic imperative but also fundamental to Qatar's and the region's future success and prosperity. Qatar's commitment to developing digital skills, as highlighted by its National Vision 2030, speaks to its dedication to fostering a future-ready, digitally competent workforce. As such, the government is proactively investing in specialised training, upskilling, and reskilling programs, which aim to build a skilled and adaptable workforce. These endeavours aim to ensure that the workforce remains relevant to the labour market, fostering a digitally adept and competitive talent pool poised to contribute to the ongoing technological advancements in Qatar and beyond."

Digital economy evolution 

Advanced infrastructure and increased investment in information technology serve as the driving force behind the surge in the digital economy in the labour market. This momentum was reinforced by substantial investments ($104 billion) in applied Artificial Intelligence (AI), significant commitments ($84 billion) by companies to cloud and edge computing, and large investments ($86 billion) in climate technologies beyond electrification and renewables in 2022. This shift in investment is not only reshaping multiple industries but is also leading to a higher need for digital skills.

Qatar is swiftly adopting digital transformation trends to modernise various sectors and drive efficiency, innovation and economic growth. Projected at a compound annual growth rate of 9.2%, ICT spending in Qatar is expected to reach $9 billion by 2024. Furthermore, the anticipated expansion of the cloud computing market in Qatar is poised to reach $303 million by 2026. These strategic initiatives underscore Qatar's commitment to upskilling programs and technology partnerships, aimed at equipping its business sector and workforce with essential digital skills.

The full report is available on the Invest Qatar website.

By Fathimath Nasli - March 06, 2024

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