H.E. Vice Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture, Eng. Mansour Al-Mushaiti sponsored the First Innovation & Modern Technology Forum and the accompanying exhibition, that held at the Ministry's headquarters in Riyadh. The forum also was attended by a number of Their Excellencies the president of king Abdul-Aziz city for science & technology (KACST), H.E. Dr. Munir Eldesouki, Vice Minister of Ministry for Communications & Information Technology, H. E. Eng. Haitham Alohali, the Governor of Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) H.E. Eng. Abdullah AL-Abdul-Karim and a number of relevant entities and companies.
During the forum, the ministry has launched "The Innovation and Localizing Modern Technology Portfolio".
Eng. AL-Mushaiti stated that the forum aims to highlight the importance of the adaption of innovation and localization of technology to achieve environmental sustainability, food, and water security. In addition to the launch of the innovation and the localization of modern technology portfolio that focuses on three main programs to accelerate the process of modern technology localization in the sectors of environment, water, and agriculture. These programs and initiatives will contribute in the sectors sustainability and increased GDP. Moreover, during the exhibition accompanying the forum, a number of tech-provided company had presented many promising technology that state of art technology in the fields of the environment, water and agriculture in the Kingdom.
In his speech, the Deputy Minister for Research & Innovation, Dr.Hamad Al-Batshan emphasized the importance of applying the ministry's strategy in research and innovation and concerted effort to enable the transformation for localization of cutting-edge technology and empower young innovators, researchers, and entrepreneurs to be a part of this pivot transformation.
After that, the General Manager of the Innovation & Modern Technology Department, Dr. Motaz Alsolaim explained the Kingdom's directions to promote research, development, and innovation and, clarified the ministry's strategy to adopt and localize modern technology to achieve sustainability goals. These efforts will help to make the Kingdom one of the highest-ranking countries in the world on the Innovation Global Index GII.
As the General Director of the Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution of the WEF(C4IR-KSA),Dr. Basma Al-Buhairan highlighted that the C4IR's role is to develop policies and legislation in order to adapt fourth Industrial technology in the sectors throughout the artificial intelligence for agricultural innovation AI4AI initiative with high engagement with the main stakeholders.
Thereafter, during the discussion panel, the CEO of SIRC, Mr. Ziyad Al-shiha, CEO of National Center for Palm & Dates, Dr. Mohammad Al-nuwairan, and Vice President of Digital Transformation & Sustainability, Microsoft, Zainab Alamin, had shown the importance of synergy between all the ecosystem to accelerate the adoption of the modern technology on our sectors. For example, Dr. Al-nuwairan explained the importance of innovation and technology in the palm sector sustainability. Then, Mr. Ziyad Al-shiha confirmed that SIRC works to adopt the best-integrated waste management solutions, combat oil pollution at sea, monitor a landfill, as well as recycling. Zainab Al-Amin revealed the launch of the Microsoft cloud for sustainability to empower entrepreneurs in the sustainability sector in the Kingdom.
At the end of the forum, MEWA has signed three MoUs the first was with C4IR for developing policies to promote the adoption of modern technology in the Ministry's sectors. The second MoU was between MEWA and Oracle to support technical solutions in all three sectors. And the third MoU was signed with Microsoft to achieve sustainability by activating innovation and modern technology.