Mohammed Al Gergawi joins secretary general's panel of experts
UAE minister chosen as UN digital technology adviser
The UAE’s cooperative approach to digital technology can lead the way for the international community.
So says Mohammed Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future, who has been chosen as a member of a United Nations panel on digital cooperation.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres picked Mr Al Gergawi as one of 20 independent experts to advise him on the panel, which was launched at the UN headquarters in New York on Thursday.
It includes leaders from government, private industry, civil society, academia and the technology community.
Its purpose is to strengthen international cooperation in digital industries, realise the potential of technology and safeguard against risks inherent in such advances.
"We stand at the very outset of vast changes, and are not yet able to predict the impact of the technological revolution. The issue we are dealing with is bigger than any particular aspect like cyber security, privacy, or economic changes,” said Mr Al Gergawi.
“I am honoured to bring the UAE perspective to the discussion. The UAE is in the business of change and embracing the future,” he said.
“We need to embrace technology and bring the right people together from across sectors and regions of the world in order to bring the country, the region and the world into the future.”
The UAE has been a strong advocate for cooperation in the digital realm, he said, pointing to the UAE Centennial Plan 2071.
The five-decade strategy says cooperation is needed to provide the tools, knowledge and skills to push technology forward.
Plan 2071 is essential to long-term economic diversification and national security, said Mr Gergawi.
Cyberattacks have been a constant threat to the UAE and illustrate the need to balance potential with risks.
The minister said the UAE believes in a common purpose for all nations to tackle challenges and opportunities brought about by “the fourth industrial revolution”.
The UAE, through the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority, is a platinum sponsor of the world summit on the Information Society Forum.
“As a highly networked and future-oriented country, the UAE strongly supports the secretary-general's initiative and looks forward to the panel’s findings,” said Ambassador Lana Nusseibeh, Permanent Representative of the UAE to the UN in New York.