November 2016, Amman – The Middle East & North Africa Information & Communications Technology Forum 2016 has concluded its activities on 10th November at the King Hussein Business Park. The Forum witnessed a series of sessions and activities in the presence of notable speakers and experts, in addition to tech enthusiasts who attended the Forum from all over the world.
The Forum was launched on 9th November under the Royal Patronage of His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein. The opening session saw speeches from Int@j Chairman Bashar Hawamdeh, Minister of Information and Communications Technology Her Excellency Mrs. Majd Shweikeh, in addition to REACH 2025 representative Karim Kawar.
Several sessions were held on the first day, among which were Digitizing the Economy, What Does the Industry Need to Grow?, Media: Content is Still King, Taking your SME Global: Growth Hacking Techniques for Tech Companies, Smart Cities: Cities of the Future, and Financial Services: Cash, Plastic or Phone?
Second-day sessions featured interactive discussions on the experience of several countries with modern tech trends, in addition to the best practices that enable them to enter the world of digital economy and harnessing tech applications in the best way. Moreover, an entire session was dedicated to REACH 2025, the royal initiative for making Jordan relevant in the global digital economy based on its existing strengths and opportunities, with the participation and presence of the experts who set its core elements. The initiative is set to be implemented in the near future.
Other sessions held on the second day included Healthcare IT, Digital Economy Infrastructure, Humanitarian Causes: the World is a Global Village, Education: Learning Can Be Fun, and finally the Action Plan to Digitize the Jordanian Economy – REACH 2025.
The final day of the Forum also witnessed the announcement of several agreements and partnerships, among which were the One Thousand Entrepreneurs Initiative, launched by Int@j in partnership with “Nejmi”, the first private-sector establishments to offer support to the initiative were Umniah and Bank Al Etihad; the Zain-Microsoft partnership for supporting entrepreneurs; the Int@j-Orange partnership for promoting entrepreneur support offered by the Blue Ocean Council; the agreement between MENAITECH and Microsoft, which aims to offer specialized solutions and systems bundles in the MENA region; the official launch for the Digital Opportunity Trust in Jordan; the partnership agreement between the Cairo Amman Bank and Oracle; the launch of the first Jordanian pavilion at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona by Int@j, Zain, Al Manaseer Group, Qattous Group, Luminus Group, as well as the USAID Jordan Competitiveness Program and Visit Jordan; and the agreement between the Int@j and the Algerian National Association for ANSEJ, CNAC, ANGEM Beneficiaries and Young Investors along with shareholder Numidia Telecom. Int@j has also announced the annual “National ICT Day” as of next year, a day which celebrates the importance of digitizing the economy all over the Kingdom and ways to achieve it, by holding events and awareness-raising sessions.
Int@j thanked Forum organizers, supporters, sponsors, speakers and media representatives in the closing session which witnessed the presence of the Minister of Information and Communications Technology, Her Excellency Mrs. Majd Shweikeh.
Forum participants, speakers and local and regional media representatives flocked to Jordan for the Forum, which stands witness to Jordan becoming a preferred ICT destination for experts from all parts of the world.
It is worth mentioning that the MENA ICT Forum was launched in 2002, and has since been held biennially. It aims to build the vision and mission of the ICT sector in the region, in addition to keeping the audience informed of the latest tech trends and developments, as well as offering them a wide array of international experiences brought forward by field experts from different backgrounds. All-important and widely anticipated by various stakeholders, the MENA ICT Forum has become the premier ICT industry event of the Middle East and North Africa region.
About the Information and Communications Technology Association of Jordan – Int@j
The Information and Communications Technology Association of Jordan – Int@j, is an ICT & IT Enabled Services (ITES) industry-support association founded in 2000, with the aim of improving the dynamics of Jordan’s ICT and ITES market, and developing Jordan’s ICT and ITES related activities. Membership is open to all companies operating in Jordan in the fields of software development, support, application, telecommunications, digital content, Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) and ICTES services, value-added assembly and distribution of ICT and ITES products and services, and is also open to the suppliers and users of these industries, along with universities and other parties supporting ICT and ITES training and promotion. Members of the association vary from major ICT companies to smaller start-ups. Int@j enables, empowers, and helps develop these companies through offering its services through sectoral publications and its network of member companies, in addition to holding forums for the sector’s main players, providing capacity building opportunities, facilitating marketing, providing institutional services and consultations, and representing the sector in legal matters, in addition to contracting and implementing several development initiatives, forums, and conferences.