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Regional Organisations to Invest $30 Billion in Digitisation This Year

Industries in the Middle East and Africa to increase investments on digital transformation in response to a skill gap in tech talent.

In an attempt to defy the reprimands of a foreseen global shortage in tech talent, organisations in the Middle East and Africa from a range of banking, energy, and resource industries are expected to spend $30 billion on digital transformation this year.

Ammar Al Malik, managing director of Dubai Internet City, one of the UAE’s investment zones, says the tech industry is facing a talent shortage, which will hinder the pace of advancements in digital transformation. LA-based management consulting firm, Korn Ferry, also predicts a global tech talent shortage of more than a staggering 85 million people. 

The skill shortage in the region’s tech industry is said to have been slowing down digitisation, which pushes back on investment and eventually forces companies to resort to automation. “To minimise the impact of talent shortage on the companies’ bottom line, we provide them with monitoring tools or software to perform various tasks,” says Charbel Khneisser, MENA regional director at Riverbed Technology. 

The leveraging of new technologies to enable a quicker pace of digital transformation of the companies’ operations hence foresees a higher investment rate within the tech industry. “Total IT [information technology] spend in the MEA will be 90$ billion in 2020, and one-third of this will directly go towards digital transformation initiatives,” says Jyoti Lalchandani, group vice president and managing director for MEA and Turkey at IDC (International Data Corporation).

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