His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, highlighted the UAE’s keenness to adopt the latest technologies and the Artificial Intelligence, AI, under the framework of its development approach and its ambitious vision.
While participating in the launch of the EDGE advanced technology group, he said that technology is one of the cornerstones of the country’s development, and the UAE is reinforcing its position as a leading advanced technology centre and the headquarters of key developers, specialists and researchers in this field.
Starting with break-through innovations in the high investment defence sector and with a priority on national security, EDGE is consolidating more than 25 entities, including subsidiaries from the Emirates Defence Industries Company, EDIC, Emirates Advanced Investments Group, EAIG, Tawazun Holding and other independent organisations.
The launch was attended by H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior; H.H. Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Managing Director of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority; H.H. Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of the Zayed Higher Organisation for People of Determination, ZHO; H.H. Sheikh Khalid bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Member of the Executive Council and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Office; Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance; Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Member of the Executive Council of Abu Dhabi, and US House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith, as well as several other Emirati ministers and officials.
Faisal Al Bannai, the CEO and Managing Director, EDGE, said, "EDGE will invest extensively across Research and Development, R&D, working closely with front-line operators to design and deploy practical solutions that address real-world challenges."
He added, "The solution to address hybrid warfare, lies at the convergence of innovations from the commercial world and the military industry. Established with a core mandate to disrupt an antiquated military industry generally stifled by red tape, EDGE is set to bring products to market faster and at more cost-effective price points."
Al Bannai has been appointed to lead EDGE, based on his start-up background and proven track record in leveraging emerging technologies to expand business opportunities at home and abroad.
EDGE also aims to establish closer partnerships with defence sector officials and leading equipment producers from around the world, as well as accelerate its pace of innovation by attracting the sector’s experts and qualified global researchers, to help it develop a range of modern products.
The group intends to adopt advanced technologies, such as autonomous capabilities, physical cyber systems, the internet, advanced propulsion systems, robotics and smart materials while focussing on AI.
Commenting on the launch of the group, Tareq Al Hosani, Chief Executive of Tawazun Economic Council, said, "We are investing in ways of dealing with the unknown caused by technology, by focussing on the sustainable security and defence sectors. Edge will help us reinforce our local capacities and increase our defence and security exports."
In 2018, the UAE led the Arab world in the Global Innovation Index, and EDGE aims to help the country maintain and strengthen this position. It also specialises in advanced defence technologies and related areas and is developing leading solutions.
To solve the real challenges facing the world, EDGE is dedicated to bringing innovative services and technologies to the market more quickly and efficiently, by combining the expertise of over 25 institutions and nearly 12,000 skilled employees in five key sectors, which are platforms, systems, missiles, weapons and defence, and cyberspace, cyber warfare and mission support. Today, EDGE is advancing its knowledge through technical leadership.