Dubai aims to expand metaverse, blockchain sector by five times under new strategy

Dubai has unveiled a new strategy which aims to turn the emirate into one of the world’s top 10 metaverse economies.

The city in the United Arab Emirates is already home to around 1,000 metaverse and blockchain companies, contributing US$500 million to the national income, and it aims to increase the number of these firms by five times in five years under the Dubai Metaverse Strategy.

The plan aims to create 40,000 virtual jobs relating to the metaverse that will add US$4 billion to Dubai’s economy in five years, said Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prime Minister and Crown Prince of Dubai as he unveiled the strategy on July 18.

The strategy aims to foster innovation, enhance the metaverse’s economic contributions through R&D collaborations, and promote advanced ecosystems utilising accelerators and incubators that attract companies and projects to Dubai, the official WAM news agency said.

It emphasises fostering talent and investing in future capabilities by supporting metaverse education aimed at developers, content creators and users of digital platforms in the metaverse community.

Web3 technology and applications will be developed to create new governmental work models and those in vital sectors, including tourism, education, retail, remote work, healthcare, and the legal sector under the strategy.

It also aims to develop global standards in building safe and secure platforms for users and develop metaverse infrastructure and regulations to accelerate the adoption of these technologies, WAM reported.

Extended reality, AR, VR, mixed reality, and digital twins will be the strategy’s key pillars. The aim is to use real-time data, machine learning and IoT, AI simulation and blockchain to enhance the human thinking processes, WAM reported.

Recently, Dubai has taken steps to attract crypto asset-related companies. In March, it established an agency for crypto-asset service providers. In April, Dubai-based Emirates airline announced it would provide NFTs and metaverse experience for its customers and employees. The airline became the first airline to launch its own VR app on the Oculus store last year.