Smart Dubai in­tro­duces data ini­tia­tive to boost re­tail trade

The National - News - - BUSINESS - Sar­mad Khan

Smart Dubai, the gov­ern­ment body charged with driv­ing Dubai’s city­wide smart trans­for­ma­tion, and the Dubai Depart­ment of Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment rolled out a data ini­tia­tive to pre­dict trends that can help strengthen the emi­rate’s re­tail sector.

The joint ini­tia­tive will pro­vide in­sights into city­wide re­tail data for in­formed eco­nomic pol­icy de­ci­sion-mak­ing, the two en­ti­ties said yes­ter­day. The move is part of the Pri­vate Sector Data En­gage­ment Strat­egy of the gov­ern­ment, which is de­signed to in­crease col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween the pub­lic and pri­vate sec­tors on data.

“Data is the foun­da­tion of smart cities. We’ve said this be­fore on nu­mer­ous oc­ca­sions, and we re­it­er­ate it as we …. drive its [Dubai’s] plans to be­come the smartest and hap­pi­est city in the world,” said Aisha Bint Butti bin Bishr, di­rec­tor gen­eral, Smart Dubai.

“Our goal is to en­able the seam­less ex­change and use of data to es­tab­lish a ro­bust data ecosys­tem and create eco­nomic and so­cial value.”

The ini­tia­tive will re­sult in anonymised and ag­gre­gated data be­ing ex­am­ined to un­der­stand catch­ment area – the zone sur­round­ing re­tail­ers or malls from which they can draw cus­tomers – vis­i­tor flow and spend­ing trends in one of Dubai’s largest malls.

Apart from the DED, or Dubai Econ­omy as the depart­ment is also known, Smart Dubai is part­ner­ing with Ma­jid Al Fut­taim, one of the big­gest re­tail and leisure con­glom­er­ates in the re­gion, and UAE tele­coms op­er­a­tor du.

Smart Dubai has an agree­ment with MAF to en­hance data and an­a­lyt­ics ca­pa­bil­i­ties.

The re­tail sector is one of the most im­por­tant con­trib­u­tors to the gross do­mes­tic prod­uct of Dubai, the com­mer­cial and busi­ness hub of the Mid­dle East. The whole­sale and re­tail sector was by far the emi­rate’s largest sector in 2018, ac­cord­ing to fig­ures from the Dubai Sta­tis­tics Cen­tre. It ac­counted for 26.4 per cent of Dubai GDP – more than double the con­tri­bu­tion of the sec­ond sector in line, trans­port and stor­age, which ac­counted for just 12.3 per cent. Whole­sale and re­tail grew 3.3 per cent in the first half of 2019.

“Our fo­cus on the re­tail sector stems from the im­mense con­tri­bu­tion it makes to Dubai’s econ­omy,” Ms bin Bishr added.

Al­though the re­tail sector faces com­pe­ti­tion from on­line por­tals such as Ama­zon and Noon, gov­ern­ment, fis­cal sup­port pro­grammes, ini­tia­tives that fa­cil­i­tate busi­ness and the emi­rate’s ef­forts to in­crease the num­ber of vis­i­tors, are help­ing to boost growth.

“For Dubai, it is very im­por­tant to un­der­stand the changes in per­for­mance of the emi­rate’s main sec­tors and an­a­lyse the per­for­mance of each sector with pub­lic and pri­vate stake­hold­ers to con­sis­tently im­prove the en­vi­ron­ment for do­ing busi­ness in the city,” said Sami Al Qamzi, di­rec­tor gen­eral of Dubai Econ­omy. “We as­sure the pri­vate sector that the gov­ern­ment will share more eco­nomic data sets with them to help them,” he added.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.