UAE, Saudi Arabia Top Entrepreneurial Ecosystems Rankings

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In a recent report by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor for 2023-2024, the UAE and Saudi Arabia claimed the top spots, ranking first and third, respectively. This prestigious report, highly regarded by international bodies such as the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, and various UN organisations, assesses the entrepreneurial landscapes of countries worldwide.

Saudi Arabia showcased remarkable progress in its entrepreneurial environment, with its National Entrepreneurship Context Index score climbing from 5.0 in 2019 to a solid 6.3 in both 2022 and 2023. This reflects the nation’s successful endeavours to diversify its economy and nurture a conducive atmosphere for entrepreneurship. A notable highlight was the surge in female entrepreneurship, with eight women initiating new businesses for every 10 men in 2023.

Moreover, Saudi Arabia boasts the highest proportion of adults who are acquainted with an entrepreneur, perceive ease in commencing a business, recognise promising business opportunities, and believe they possess the requisite skills and experience to embark on entrepreneurial ventures. However, despite widespread acknowledgment of opportunities and capabilities, there remains a prevalent fear of failure among entrepreneurs, the report concluded.

In addition, a significant number of Saudi entrepreneurs are expected to harness digital technologies and focus on minimising environmental footprints while maximising social impacts, indicating a readiness to tackle future challenges head-on.

On the other hand, the UAE has set a remarkable record with its National Entrepreneurship Context Index score reaching an unprecedented 7.7, the highest in the history of the report. The UAE was hailed as the world’s best environment for initiating and conducting new business ventures, surpassing many advanced economies. Furthermore, it ranked third globally in terms of physical infrastructure.

The UAE has made significant strides in entrepreneurship education within schools, emphasising crucial skills like creative thinking, problem-solving, opportunity recognition, and risk assessment. In this aspect, the country ranked among the top five out of 49 nations assessed in the report.