The launch of the first global forum for smart cities in the Kingdom

The launch of the first global forum for smart cities in the Kingdom

The first global forum for smart cities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, organized by the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA) in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs and Housing, kicked off today, at the Arena Riyadh headquarters, under the slogan “A Better Life,” with the participation of 100 speakers representing 40 countries. Countries around the world, in the presence of a number of Their Highnesses, Ministers, smart cities and artificial intelligence experts, economic policy makers, senior officials from the government and private sectors, and investors from various countries of the world.

The forum comes within the framework of the support and care that “Sadaya” enjoys from His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince, Prime Minister and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority – may God protect him – to bring the Kingdom to leadership within the economies based on Data and artificial intelligence, as SDAIA, as the national reference for data and artificial intelligence in the Kingdom, seeks through this forum to form an ambitious vision for the future of cities in the world, including the cities of the Kingdom.

The ceremony began with the largest visual presentation in which more than 101 exhibitors representing various nationalities participated, showcasing the qualitative shift that the world’s cities will witness in transforming into smart cities that enjoy advanced services that benefit people and provide them with a better life, in addition to the facilities provided by advanced technologies, represented by artificial intelligence, for these cities. Contributes to building a modern, human-centered environment.

After that, His Excellency the President of the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA), Dr. Abdullah bin Sharaf Al-Ghamdi, gave a speech in which he said: Today we stand at a crossroads between tradition and innovation, and we remember that while we can reach the sky with data and technology; Our feet remain firmly planted in serving our citizens and residents of our cities, and in this forum we have more than 100 speakers representing 40 different countries, and we are meeting today and tomorrow to achieve three goals, which are: anticipating smart sustainable cities in the future, promoting smart government initiatives worldwide, and stimulating… Companies to invest in building smart solutions.

His Excellency added: “During this global forum, we will discuss important topics, including: the role of technologies in global cities, the future of urban mobility and solutions to congestion, innovations in shaping the cities of the future, planning for green and sustainable cities in the next decade, and more, as we begin to build the national smart cities platform.” Smart C” in the past few years; To implement the vision of His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince, Prime Minister, and Chairman of the Board of Directors of “Sedaya” – may God protect him -, and we are very grateful for his guidance, which had an effective role in achieving wonderful results that are in line with his future vision for the Kingdom.

He explained that in 2023, the joint efforts of government agencies that use the national smart cities platform “Smart C” contributed to reducing traffic congestion on the road network leading to the site of a huge conference in Riyadh by 36%, compared to 2022, and we have also developed algorithms and models for continuous detection. About visual pollution on our streets, using weekly snapshots of major cities in Saudi Arabia, in cooperation with the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs and Housing in an initiative to support national efforts to sustain urban landscapes in the Kingdom and improve the quality of life.

His Excellency stated that during the last Hajj season, and in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior, “Sadaya” supported traffic and crowd management through advanced analytics and artificial intelligence solutions, and we contributed to the national efforts aimed at increasing the per capita share of green spaces by 9%, using the capabilities of the platform. “Smart C” to detect and monitor the level of afforestation in the city of Riyadh.

His Excellency continued, saying: We believe in the importance of strengthening the smart cities system to enable sustainable growth, and one example includes: launching the smart cities accelerator with strong participation from local and international startups. This initiative created commercial opportunities in the field of smart cities and facilitated the arrival of more than 100 teams from 39 universities. To the markets, we launched the Smartathon Challenge during the World Summit on Artificial Intelligence in cooperation with our partners, in order to provide modern solutions to improve the urban landscape, with the participation of more than 16,000 contestants from more than 90 countries, to invent 650 actual solutions to real problems, indicating that the development of the national digital identity platform “ “Nafth” and the comprehensive application of our trust led to saving the equivalent of 19 days annually of an individual’s time, confirming that through our unity in this endeavor, we provide much more than just planning urban spaces; We are planting the seeds of a safer, more efficient and sustainable future for a “better life!”

After that, His Excellency the Minister of Municipal, Rural Affairs and Housing, Mr. Majid bin Abdullah Al-Hogail, delivered a speech in which he stressed that the concept of “smart cities” is not just urban areas equipped with technology; Rather, achieving it requires creating environmental and operational systems that integrate municipal services, transportation, education, health, tourism, and other businesses and services, so that they are designed to improve the quality of life of residents, indicating that the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 is the specific path for our transformation journey, and through it we worked to launch a strategy. It aims for urban growth and to portray cities as vibrant centers of sustainable development and technology, where people live lives that meet their aspirations, achieve well-being and enable them to achieve.

After that, His Highness Prince Dr. Faisal bin Abdulaziz bin Ayyaf, Mayor of the Riyadh Region, participated in a dialogue session entitled “Leading Innovation and Sustainable Progress: Cases of Using Smart Cities in Transforming the Urban Landscape of Riyadh,” as part of the forum’s activities, during which His Highness stressed that Riyadh will surprise the world with its huge projects. Which will be a global model in all fields, His Highness indicating that Riyadh is working today on a comprehensive transformation journey and a clear strategy that stems from the ambitions of His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince and Prime Minister – may God protect him – which is leading a major movement in the capital and achieving… Progress in the transformation index of a smart city day after day.

His Highness said: Riyadh will surprise everyone, and our ambition is very high, and we will achieve it. We are fortunate to have the elements that any city dreams of, and we have a leader, His Highness the Crown Prince – may God protect him – who is a great driver of everything that happens in the city, and there are great plans, programs and projects taking place in the city, and we are optimistic that Riyadh will be a role model for the world and a model. A role model.


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