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Dubai ruler Mohammed bin Rashid launches plan to overhaul government spending through blockchain initiatives

The UAE plans to adopt blockchain technology, in the development of 'Future Industry', to radically shake up government spending, citizen lifestyle and entrepreneurship as they announced the ‘UAE Blockchain Strategy 2021’.

This includes widespread initiatives to encourage more blockchain developers and interest in the technology to make the UAE a leader in the industry. The four pillars of the strategy are citizen and resident happiness, government efficiency, advanced legislation, and global entrepreneurship.

The Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said: “50% of government transactions on the federal level will be conducted using blockchain technology by 2021. This technology will save time, effort and resources and enable individuals to conduct most of their transactions in a timely manner that suits their lifestyle and work.”

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He added that the adoption of blockchain technology would help the government prepare for future challenges and argued it would save AED11 billion ($3 billion) yearly through reducing the number of government documents and hours travelling to work.

The government will arrange for training courses, events and workshops to help the scheme become successful and will support university courses specializing in the technology and related subjects, such as encryption.

In October 2016, it was reported that the UAE had set a target for all government documents to be held on blockchain technology by 2020. In April that year, the government had announced its Global Blockchain Initiative. At the time an idea was expressed that this could enable users to cross borders using identification measures.