Blockchain applications have seen massive growth over the past few years. The technology is now being applied in several sectors, from supply chain management to healthcare, social media, digital advertising, and even in government transactions.
One of the regions using blockchain for governance is the Middle East, and this was reflected in a panel interview titled “Government & Public Sector Applications on Blockchain” on Day 3 of the CoinGeek New York Conference. A panel of four experts from the region shared their insights on why the Middle East is leading the charge of utilizing blockchain in government transactions. One of the panelists who spearheaded the interview was Saeed Mohammed Alhebsi, the senior project manager at the UAE Ministry of HR and Emiratisation.
Alhebsi later joined CoinGeek Backstage reporter Patrick Thompson to discuss more about his work at the UAE Ministry, how blockchain technology innovation is going on in UAE, and the Middle Eastern country’s next step for the technology. Alhebsi described himself as someone who comes “from the government side… working with the ministry of human resource and UAE government. I am part of AI advisory and project manager in the ministry.”
As Alhebsi mentioned in the panel interview, the UAE government takes blockchain technology seriously. The senior project manager, who is also an AI expert, revealed that UAE has been working on an AI blockchain strategy since 2018, and it aims to lead the sector internationally.
“We have our AI blockchain [strategy] in the Middle East, and we have our first AI minister, we [also] have our ministry in AI. We have a blockchain center. We come as a UAE tech hub in the [blockchain] area,” Alhebsi pointed out.
“We, as a country, UAE, [is] one of the lead in the blockchain technologies strategic. We announced about [our] AI and the blockchain strategy in 2018. We have a very clear vision and very clear strategy in that area to be an international leader in blockchain technologies,” he added.
Thompson asked if the UAE government is eager to optimize the use of the blockchain technology. Alhebsi replied that the Middle Eastern country is currently working on verifying government records and moving some of its traditional government transactions and services in the blockchain. Noting that in Allah’s will and by the next time they see each other, there will be more things to talk about the development of blockchain technology in the country.
“As a government, our [strategy is] to transfer 50 percent of our government transaction to the blockchain technologies,” Alhebsi said. “So this is, Inshallah, next time when we meet again, we have a lot of things to talk [about what has been] established in the UAE.”
To wrap up the interview, Thompson asked Alhebsi about his general takeaway for the audience, where Alhebsi cheerfully welcomes everyone to Dubai—hinting where the next BSV Blockchain conference will be taking place.
“Welcome always to Dubai. Welcome always in UAE as a blockchain hub in that area,” Alhebsi said.
Watch: CoinGeek New York panel, Government & Public Sector Applications on Blockchain
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