Qatar 2030: Economic innovation through digital transformation
24 January 2023
Qatar has the appropriate fixings to turn into a worldwide famous forerunner in innovation and development. It has a robust infrastructure of world-class quality; a young, tech-savvy generation whose median age is approximately 33 years at the moment; Additionally, it is guided by the Qatar National Vision 2030, a plan for economic and social development that places digital transformation at the center.
Since its inception in 2008, the National Vision 2030 has weathered a variety of financial, geopolitical, and health crises to stay on course and accomplish its overarching objectives. The public authority’s structure is broadening the public economy, engaging the confidential area, and totally altering the manner in which the public area takes special care of individuals’ necessities.
It assisted Qatar with recording one of the greatest Gross domestic product per capita figures on the planet – $61,276 – in 2021, which is striking given the world was still in recuperation mode from the devastating impacts of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Qatar is a forward-thinking nation with cutting-edge technology and a robust IT infrastructure that can listen to and quickly respond to its citizens’ and residents’ needs. In addition, it has demonstrated its digital readiness and logistical expertise by hosting major international sporting events. In the country, all digital wallets—Google Pay, Samsung Pay, and Apple Pay—are now operational and handle more than 10% of all transactions. Additionally, Qataris have demonstrated a willingness to embrace this digital transformation.
Omnichannel payments are growing among the population that is aware of the internet. For instance, contactless technology was the digital catalyst for the proliferation of new payment methods due to its speed, safety, and touch-free experience. Customers can save time and effort by using this novel method of payment instead of handing over their payment card, pressing physical buttons, or exchanging cash.
Between the first quarter of 2020 and the same time in 2021, the percentage of contactless transactions among all in-person transactions increased by at least 50% in more than 100 markets. One year into the COVID-19 pandemic, contactless technology demonstrated its viability when Mastercard recorded one billion more contactless transactions worldwide in the first quarter of 2021 than in the same period in 2020. All indications point to contactless continuing to advance.
85% of people in MENA have used at least one emerging payment method in the past year, including tappable smartphone mobile wallets, BNPL, biometrics, and payment-enabled wearable tech devices, according to Mastercard’s New Payments Index 2022. This shows that consumers will continue to be interested in new payment methods and how the Qatari population is embracing new technologies.
If a company wants to succeed in today’s market, it is in their best interest to implement cutting-edge payment solutions. In this context, Mastercard has launched Tap on Phone for micro and small businesses in collaboration with a number of banks. Businesses can now accept payments for their goods or services using smartphones thanks to this technology.
Through its National Vision 2030, the government’s support and encouragement will further motivate public and private businesses to accelerate their efforts in this area.
We are shaping the Qatari digital economy in close collaboration with governments, fintech companies, and financial institutions to make it more inclusive, competitive, convenient, and well-positioned for continued growth. Value is added and the number of options available is increased when bold, like-minded, and engaged partners collaborate to innovate.
The future looks brighter as more people and businesses take advantage of the opportunities provided by digitalization and technology. We are collectively establishing a thriving ecosystem that has the potential to drive economic prosperity and steady improvement in livelihoods.
The pandemic, along with its mandatory lockdowns, social isolation, and quarantines, is effectively selecting which businesses will survive. Businesses that have made an early commitment to digital transformation are better positioned to weather the economic storm in a world where contactless communication and social distance are the norm.
For one thing, prior to the pandemic, businesses that had already arranged for a portion of their workforce to work remotely do not have to worry as much as those that did not or were late adopters, who frequently had to rush remote work setups in exchange for costly errors.
In the meantime, businesses that recognize the advantages of cashless transactions, particularly those that can be carried out with mobile phones, not only survive but also thrive during the pandemic. They were able to best weather the severe economic effects of the pandemic by switching to digital payments early:
As a result of the valuable lessons learned by business survivors during the pandemic, full digitization should be imminent. Digital content consumption, streaming, digital health solutions, virtual classrooms, virtual events, and omnichannel and remote work are all examples of areas where full digital transformation is rapidly approaching.
There’s a ton of innovations today that can’t be used to their fullest because of restricted network. For instance, autonomous vehicles must constantly communicate with other vehicles on the road. They must also simultaneously receive and transmit a great deal of information. As a result, they require connections that are faster than what is currently available. In a similar vein, connectivity issues prevent wearable technology and smart cities from being fully implemented.
It is anticipated that the current 4G LTE connection will be replaced or expanded by the fifth-generation (5G) network to improve mobile connectivity. It speeds up by an exponential amount, going faster than the previous generation could ever hope to. For instance, LTE connectivity typically reaches its peak speed of 300 mbps, whereas 5G speeds hover around 2 gbps.