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The UAE government launches “Coders HQ” Empowering Coding Communities locally and globally

  • NEWS
  • 11 January 2022

Embodying the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the UAE government launched the Coders HQ, a new transformational project that re-defines local coding communities, in partnership with more than 40 companies in the UAE and worldwide.

The project, established in the Emirates Towers, aims to build a new generation of coders, enhance their capabilities and skills in the fields of coding and technology, empower them with top-notch tools and expertise, and provide them with the opportunity to design innovative solutions to address local and global challenges, thus consolidating the UAE’s leading position as a global hub for coders and digital economy.

The project was launched in a virtual ceremony organized by the National Program for Coders, in the presence of His Excellency Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, and representatives of partners in the project. Participants reviewed the key initiatives and programs that the Coders HQ will launch over the coming period.

H.E. Omar Sultan Al Olama said that launching the Coders HQ, comes under the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, aiming to develop advanced coding communities as a key driver for shaping the future and harnessing the new, fast-growing digital economy, thus achieving the leadership’s vision and the 10 principles for the next 50 years, namely consolidating the position of the UAE as a global hub for talents, startups and innovators.

H.E. added that the project embodies the UAE’s vision in preparing a new generation of coders, capable of finding innovative solutions to future challenges, exploring new opportunities to build a competitive knowledge-based economy, and creating a comprehensive development process based on investing in skills and talents to build their future capabilities. It further provides an incubating and stimulating environment for skilled coders, building an enabling ecosystem to help them innovate technical solutions to address challenges.

As one of the projects and initiatives of the National Program for Coders, the Coders HQ aims to consolidate the position of the UAE as a global hub for coders and an incubating ecosystem for projects and innovative ideas for building a better future. It further features advanced technological infrastructure to facilitate coders’ work, and includes an events space, a supercomputer, and several workspaces. Over the coming period, 6 new coders’ HQs will be inaugurated all around the UAE.

The Coders’ HQ focuses on Four main objectives, namely, assessing the skills of coders in the UAE, developing them, enabling continuous communication among coders in the UAE and abroad, and providing coders with the best opportunities to help them enhance the UAE's leadership in this field.

Among its activities, the project encompasses Nine main initiatives, namely "HQ learn" to provide practical training courses in different coding fields to different levels of coders,  "HQ assessment" to provide a mechanism for evaluating the skills and performance of coders, "HQ meetups", which focuses on developing and incubating software communities in all fields, and “HQ challenges", to share private sector challenges whose winners receive prizes

The Project also launched the "HQ hackathons" to organize a series of short hackathons in partnership with the private sector, where winners will be eligible for prizes, the "HQ conferences" to attract mega international conferences specialized in coding to the UAE, the "HQ get inspired" to hold a series of inspiring sessions presented by CEOs and technical influencers, "HQ internship", to provide training opportunities for Emirati graduates in the digital companies, as well as "HQ 021", a joint project with the United Arab Emirates National and Reserve Service Authority (UAENSR) to develop the talents of national service coders and help them reach global levels.

In line with the UAE's wise leadership directions exhibited in the “Principles of the 50” document, the Coders HQ further announced organizing training programs for Emiratis to facilitate their participation in the various fields of coding in the private sector, while providing them with the best global knowledge to hone their skills. 40 government, semi-government, private and academic entities will provide support to the training processes to help achieve the defined objectives and yield the best outcomes.

H.E. Dr. Ali Saeed bin Harmal Al Dhaheri, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Abu Dhabi University (ADU), stated that the ADU is honored to join the National Program for Coders in a strategic partnership to promote their joint efforts in training coders. He said that this initiative embodies the wise leadership’s vision for the future towards the next 50. It further reflects the UAE’s innovative approach to hone the skills of specialized coders worldwide. He added, “By participating, Abu Dhabi University will employ the academic and practical experiences to implement the program’s strategy, leveraging its robust foundation in this field.”

H.E. highlighted that the ADU’s strategy is based on building students’ capabilities and upskilling distinguished talents and digital skills. In addition, the ADU Innovation Center plays a main role in promoting the culture of creativity and innovation among students and faculty members, holding workshops and supporting innovative projects. Furthermore, our students launched an initiative to provide financial support and training for innovative startups.

On his part, Alain Bejjani, Chief Executive Officer, Majid Al Futtaim Holding said, “Majid Al Futtaim remains committed to playing a leading role in making the UAE a world-class hub for data technology and future pioneers. As a country built around the pillars of innovation and progress, the launch of the Coders HQ strengthens the country’s commitment to becoming a leader in digital transformation and further bolsters its reputation as a destination attracting global talent while nurturing national talent through comprehensive training programs.”

“Microsoft is honored to collaborate with the National Program for Coders to launch Coder HQ, which serves as a model for the region," said Mohamed Mikou, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Marketing Officer, Microsoft Middle East and Africa. “Skilling is the bedrock of the UAE’s digital agenda as well as its success, and through this coding program, young people will gain vital skills that enable them to deliver powerful technologies to reshape the future.”

Saad Toma, IBM’s General Manager for the Middle East and Africa said, “The UAE has long led the region on adoption of emerging technologies, and has established its global position as a regional and global hub for digital economy.” He added, “We are proud to collaborate with the National Program for Coders that further highlights the UAE’s leading role in promoting technology innovation that made it a thriving global hub for entrepreneurs. Our continuous cooperation and focus on building digital skills are key pillars for IBM’s commitment to contribute to the UAE’s successful digital transformation journey.”

Walid Yehia, General Manager – UAE and Sr. Director, Presales MERAT said; “In today’s digital world, coding is everywhere that becoming an essential skill the next generation workforce need to learn. At Dell Technologies, we aim to harness the power of technology to drive human progress and the Coders HQ, announced by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum that seeks to develop a new generation of programmers and coders, inspires us. We extend our congratulations to the National Program for Coders for spearheading this initiative that empowers and develops skills of the coding community.”

“We are delighted to advance our collaboration with the UAE Government to launch the Coders HQ. This initiative will reinforce our strategic collaboration to support the development of the technology and innovation ecosystem in the UAE, helping bring to life the future of social technologies. As we build towards the metaverse, the developer community will play an integral role and, as a truly open ecosystem enabling developers of all kinds to thrive and grow,” said Azzam Alameddin, Public Policy Director, MENA and Turkey at Meta.

Dr. Faisal O. Al Ayyan, Rabdan Academy’s Vice President stated that The National Program for Coders is an excellent Government initiative that will support the UAE’s national community, using innovative skills and systems to enhance safety and security and prepare the UAE for an increasingly digital future.

On his part, Dr. David A. Schmidt, President of the American University in Dubai (AUD), said, “We are honored to participate in the official launch of the Coders HQ, as part of the National Program for Coders. AUD is committed to support the strategic goals of this initiative and to implement related projects and activities. This is being materialized through a number of activities at AUD including specialized courses and workshops in coding, development of student talents for the digital economy, and reshaping of our curricula to include emerging and advanced subjects in the computer programming field.”

‏Dr. Mohamed Rahmah, Vice-President of Zodiac, representing DP World in the program, said; “The coders HQ acts as a key driver to tackle major challenges in the world of logistics and trade. Attracting and investing in the future of the UAE's technological advancements means we need to invest, attract and allocate the best global minds”.

Dr. Saleh Alhashmi Commercial and In-Country Value Director for ADNOC said:  “The National Program for Coders is a key initiative for shaping the future and the new, fast-growing digital economy. Development within the areas of science, technology, and innovation plays a vital part in ADNOC’s ability to solve challenges related to AI, big data and blockchain. Working with talented coders will help us accelerate our transformation through new technologies and ensure further growth for the UAE.

Ahmed Ouda, CEO of VMware in the MENA and Turkey’s Tech division said; “We are excited to partner with the UAE’s Artificial Intelligence Office to develop a coding ecosystem and be a leader in digital innovation. VMware will support the government’s coding initiatives, through VMware Developer Platform Tanzu, which gives coders in the UAE access to a powerful platform to develop and manage innovative modern applications from the cloud, as well as the VMware IT Academy that would allow young talents to acquire skills and certifications needed to master key aspects of coding and app development.”

Saifi Ismail, President of Yalla Group Ltd., said that the Group is proud to collaborate with the UAE on the Coders (HQ) initiative, stressing that this cooperation will support the digital economy sector and strengthen the group's presence locally and regionally. He added that Yalla would share its accumulated knowledge and technological expertise in preparing future coders, while working closely with Coders HQ team.

Charlotte Margus, General Manager of “Le Wagon” Middle East stated, "We believe the UAE will surpass their target of 100 000 coders. Some will come from abroad, however most will be trained here and Le Wagon is ready to train that pool of talent."