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Abu Dhabi launches tech fund for developing countries

Abu Dhabi's Advanced Technology Research Council announced its $200m tech fund at the World Governments Summit in Dubai Reuters/Amr Alfiky
Abu Dhabi's Advanced Technology Research Council announced its $200m tech fund at the World Governments Summit in Dubai
  • ATRC invites applications
  • Resource and research funding
  • Aim to ‘bridge technology gaps’

Abu Dhabi has launched a $200 million tech investment platform that it hopes will help developing countries catch up with wealthier nations.

The emirate’s Advanced Technology Research Council (ATRC), which unveiled the initiative at the World Government Summit in Dubai, will fund “resource and research costs” in six sectors, transport, healthcare, aerospace and space, food and agriculture, safety and security, and sustainability, environment and energy.

Public and private institutions worldwide can apply for funding from the ATRC Global Tech R&D Platform, which aims to “bridge technology gaps” and enable countries to “keep pace with the latest advancements”, according to a statement announcing its launch.

“Our commitment is to empower every nation with the means to thrive in this technology-driven world,” said the ATRC secretary general, Faisal Al Bannai.

ATRC specialises in tech sub-sectors including quantum computing, AI, autonomous robotics, cryptography and advanced materials, and has a team of about 850 researchers.

It launched nearly four years ago and is responsible for defining Abu Dhabi’s research strategy across industry and academia, according to its website.

ATRC’s subsidiary, Aspire, stages what ATRC describes as “grand challenges and global competitions” to attract talented individuals worldwide, while its Technology Innovation Institute conducts research. Another division, VentureOne, commercialises its technological breakthroughs.

Aspire’s CEO, Stephane Timpano, said: “We’re here to identify technology gaps and facilitate sophisticated solutions that countries may need to explore for a resilient future”, said Aspire CEO Stephane Timpano.

The ATRC Global Tech R&D Platform is the group’s latest initiative.

Ray Johnson, CEO of ATRC’s Technology Innovation Institute, said: “Through this platform, we will help identify untapped innovation around the world, unleashing the power of transformative technologies and sparking economic growth.” .

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