DUBAI - Abdulla bin Touq Al Marri, UAE Minister of Economy, launched the Ministry’s headquarters in the metaverse today at the Dubai Metaverse Assembly, organised by Dubai Future Foundation (DFF).

Addressing more than 500 delegates and 40 global companies including Accenture, Emirates, PwC, Microsoft, Meta, and Binance, Bin Touq said that the Ministry of Economy’s third office would offer an immersive experience for governments, global corporations and the public to connect and collaborate. It will also be equipped with advanced technology for the Ministry to sign bilateral agreements with other nations in the metaverse, bolstering the UAE’s ability to become a global hub for next-generation technologies.

During a panel discussion at the Dubai Metaverse Assembly, Bin Touq described the metaverse as an economic equaliser, transforming key industries from logistics to real estate. And with advanced physical and digital infrastructure, the UAE can build on its position as a gateway for global trade to become a digital export centre and a leading metaverse economy.

"The UAE has continued to support and empower emerging economic industries built around knowledge, innovation and artificial intelligence," Bin Touq said. "Digital technology is vital to our new economic model for the next 50 years and the metaverse represents one of the most exciting applications in this field. In line with the UAE’s forward-looking vision, we understand how the metaverse can transform and redefine our diversified economy and have continued to launch strategies to unlock its potential."

He added, "The global metaverse market is expected to reach US$1.6 trillion by 2030, with total annual growth of 43.3 percent. We are moving fast to secure a share of this prize. With advanced physical and digital infrastructure, highly skilled talent and pro-business laws, the UAE has the competitive advantages to become one of the world’s top 10 metaverse economies – and a global hub for investments in this field."

The country has continued to exert tremendous efforts to enhance the economic contribution of advanced technology under plans aims to double the size of the national economy by 2031. Bin Touq explained that the UAE’s new economic model, built on innovation and collaboration, aims to foster talent, invest in future capabilities and provide metaverse education to ensure the UAE becomes a hub to develop pioneering web 3.0 technologies and applications. With analysts expected the web 3.0 market to reach a valuation of US$80 billing by 2030.

Bin Touq participated in a panel discussion on the economic opportunities of the metaverse. He was joined by Bashar Kilani, Managing Director, Accenture; Mark Zaleski, Managing Director and Partner, BCG Digital Ventures; and Karl Tlais, Founder and Strategic Advisor of iAdvisor.