Dubai’s technology community, Dubai Internet City (DIC) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with The National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) – a non-profit trade association and an apex body of the Indian IT Business Process Management (BPM) industry. The MoU is the first-of-its-kind in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and aims to attract and encourage Indian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to the UAE.
To boost the SME ecosystem in the UAE, DIC, as part of the MoU, will provide NASSCOM’s SME members the opportunity to develop their operations by offering support and a platform to expand in the MENA region, further translating the Dubai Strategy for Innovation into action and supporting the vision to become the smartest city in the world.
The MoU was signed by Ammar Al Malik, managing director, DIC and Dubai Outsource City (DOC) and Kamal Agarwala, SME Council Chair, NASSCOM. DIC is mandated to provide Indian tech start-ups and SMEs an opportunity to establish themselves in Dubai and get access to the largest technology community, providing them with a gateway and necessary support to grow in the UAE and the wider region.
Speaking on the potential outcomes of the MoU, Malik, said, “The Middle East offers tremendous growth opportunities for innovative tech firms, with huge untapped potential. The $8 billion UAE tech industry is growing rapidly and DIC, as the leading technology business community in the region, serves as a natural launch pad for Indian technology businesses looking to expand their operations across the region.”
Dubai has welcomed an increasing number of Indian businesses over the past few months in a bid to strengthen bilateral trade between the UAE and India – on track to hit $100 billion (AED367.3 billion) by 2020. This includes a landmark new decision between UAE and India to allow businesses to transact directly in their national currencies. Additionally, Indian tourist numbers to the city grew by 15% last year, crossing the 2 million mark – the first for any country in a single year.
“As the apex body for the $154 billion Indian IT BPM industry, we have striven to ensure the continued growth of the sector, facilitate partnerships and fuel expansions. This is the first MoU of its kind in the region and Dubai’s vision and efforts to become the smartest city in the world, are second to none. Dubai Internet City is already home to leading technology Indian companies, and we firmly believe that this MoU will serve as a major catalyst for Indian businesses to expand into the region,” added Agarwala.
“DIC has provided a great support system and platform to help Indian SMEs establish their businesses here with the potential of expanding their operations to the wider Middle East region. We are excited about this collaboration with DIC that will fuel the growth of Indian technology businesses here,” concluded Debjani Ghosh, president, NASSCOM.
DIC is home to leading Indian multinationals, including Tata Consultancy Services, Tech Mahindra, Wipro and HCL Technologies. The integrated community hosts a large number of Indian professionals within its 24,000-strong workforce, which includes diverse workers from over 150 nationalities.