The UAE and Saudi Arabia: Leading the Way in Global Entrepreneurship

Business View
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The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report for 2023-2024 ranked the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia in the first and third positions respectively. This report analyzes the universal entrepreneurial systems of nations based on specific parameters. This document holds major significance for international authorities such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and several UN agencies. 

Being ranked at the top of the list, the UAE has been recognized for providing the best environment in the world to start and continue any new business. Leaving many advanced nations behind it in this aspect, the country was also ranked third at the global level for its physical infrastructure. The UAE qualified in 12 out of the 13  indicators that the report uses as its measures to compare countries. These indicators include funding for entrepreneurial projects, access to monetary resources, ease of entry into the market, infrastructure, transfer of knowledge, research and development, supportive policies, government programs, taxation, education, and cultural standards. 

The country’s Minister of Economy, Abdullah bin Touq Al Marri, directed the credits of this achievement to UAE’s focus on entrepreneurship and aid to small and medium-sized enterprises, eventually leading it to build a competitive knowledge economy based on new and flourishing ideas and innovations. He says “Today’s result reflects the integration and strength of the policies launched by the UAE to create a nurturing environment for entrepreneurship and provide a conducive climate to support and accelerate the growth of small and medium-sized enterprises and startups, especially those based on innovation, creativity, and new technologies.”

The Minister of Economy also noted that this result also aligns with the country’s targets of the UAE Vision 2031 of becoming the global hub for the new economy by the next decade, keeping in mind the importance of entrepreneurial models specially curated for developing projects and activities in the different sectors of the economy, including technology, artificial intelligence, renewable energy, space, fintech, etc. Reports suggest that this is the third time that the UAE ranked at first position in the GEM report for 2023-2024.

Saudi Arabia, too has shown tremendous developmental strides in its entrepreneurial ecosystem in the last few years. Its score rose from 5.0 in 2019 to 6.3 in 2022 and 2023, in the national Entrepreneurship Context Index. Saudi Arabia has made constant efforts and improvements to elevate the country’s outlook towards entrepreneurship. It has taken the initiative to promote budding entrepreneurs and support their ideas.

One notable aspect of the report is that it also highlighted the rise in female entrepreneurship, stating that eight women ventured into their new businesses for every 10 men in 2023. It can also be expected that a notable portion of Saudi entrepreneurs would make meaningful use of digital technologies and create a positive social impact while minimizing environmental impacts, subsequently preparing themselves to face future challenges. 

In addition to entrepreneurial skills and powerful business acumen, Saudi also possesses a high number of adults who know an entrepreneur, can easily start a business, identify potential business opportunities, and recognize the skills and experiences within them to start a business. 

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