Saudi Arabia and Microsoft ink plans to support Vision 2030

Microsoft will train young Saudis and support Saudi Arabia in its digital and knowledge-based innovation transformation under Vision 2030

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Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, second met with Satya Narayana Nadella, chief executive officer of Microsoft, at the IT giant’s office in Silicon Valley in San Francisco on Tuesday.

During the meeting, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed, under which Microsoft will train young Saudis and will support Saudi Arabia in its ambitious digital and knowledge-based innovation transformation under Vision 2030.

Microsoft inked another deal to boost the Decision Making Support Center at the Royal Court by setting up systems and operational programs with the help of a team of experts from Microsoft.

Speaking on the occasion, Nadella expressed Microsoft’s interest in entering into partnership with Saudi Arabia in its initiative to transform into a digital Kingdom.

“Microsoft will come out with technology to translate the Vision 2030 into a reality, with a focus on human capital and innovation, and we aspire to achieve it as early as possible,” he said.

The deputy crown prince also met with Salman Khan, president of Khan Academy. They discussed various aspects of academic partnership between Misk Foundation, and the academy, which is a global non-profit educational organization with the aim of providing a “free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere”. The Deputy Crown Prince also met with the founder and executive director of Ober company.

In a related development, King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology has recorded more than 30 initiatives as part of the National Transformation Program 2020. Prince Turki Bin Saud, president of the city, said that these included scientific partnership to establish 10 research centers in the United States. These centers will be devoted to implementing top priority research projects for the Kingdom in the vital strategic fields, he told the Saudi Press Agency.

Prince Mohammed bin Salman is currently visiting the US where he met US officials last week including President Barack Obama. He’s currently meeting with technology giants in Silicon Valley in talks about further investments.

This article first appeared in the Saudi Gazette on June 22, 2016.