The Lebanese Ministry of Economy and Trade has signed an MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with DigiWeb LLC, a technology and Web3 company Choueh Law Firm, and the Lebanese Association for Digital transformation to introduce Blockchain training courses, develop Blockchain use cases and launch the upcoming Blockchain conference, “Blockchaining Lebanon Conference”

This MOU establishes collaboration between DigiWeb LLC, its partners, including the Lebanese Association for Digital Transformation (LADT) and   Choueh Law Firm, and the Ministry of Economy to support the Ministry’s digital transformation process.

The primary objective of the MOU is to provide training on Blockchain, and AI from various perspectives and organize a nationwide conference in collaboration with the Ministry of Economy, with the honorable presence of Minister Amin Salam.

Lebanese Minister of Economy and Trade, H.E. Mr. Amin Salam, commented, “This MOU is an important step towards the digitization efforts of the Lebanese government. We seek to advance Lebanon’s digital future utilizing Blockchain technology. One of the vital steps towards this is the education of our employees on technologies such as Blockchain, AI, and others. The culmination of our efforts will be with the use cases and the Blockchaining Lebanon Conference.”

Fady Al Sayah, Founder & CEO of Digi Web LLC stated, “We are proud to be supporting the Lebanese Ministry of Economy and trade with their digital transformation process encompassing technologies such as AI and Blockchain. We look forward to working on Blockchain and AI use cases that benefit Lebanese citizens and streamline government services in a transparent and trustworthy manner.”

Mrs. Randa Al-Rifai, Head of Lebanese Association for Digital Transformation (LADT) added, “By training government employees on the concepts of Blockchain, and artificial intelligence we are not only up skilling the skill sets of these employees but preparing them for Web3 digitization services.” 

In terms of the event, Choueh Law Firm, represented by lawyer Mr. Charbel Choueh noted, “The conference will set Lebanon on the course to embrace the latest internet technologies, fostering innovation and progress as well as open doors to fresh investment opportunities within the burgeoning Third Generation Internet sector.”

Technologies such as Blockchain, AI, will encourage Lebanese youth and enterprises to transition into the Third Generation of the Internet, ensuring they remain at the forefront of technological advancement.

The Qatar, Ministry of Finance, signed an agreement  with the World Economic Forum (WEF) to establish a “Centre of Excellence for the Fourth Industrial Revolution” in Qatar that will help to foster an environment for research and development in technologies that include AI ( artificial intelligence), blockchain, IoT (Internet of Things), renewable energy and others.

The agreement was signed by HE the Minister of Finance, Ali bin Ahmed al-Kuwari and WEF founder and executive chairman Prof Klaus Schwab, in Doha. This strategic partnership paves the way for future collaboration, as the center aims to promote technological progress, diversify the economy and to promote sustainable development in Qatar, the Ministry of Finance noted.

It will also provide learning and training opportunities in those fields for Qatari nationals, developing their skills to keep pace with global developments.

“Qatar continues to fulfill its commitment to strengthening multilateral action to address current challenges to contribute to global growth,” Ministry of Finance added.

Overall Qatar has been pushing forth its blockchain and digital asset strategy, and has prepared a framework for digital assets as well as will be launching digital assets lab at the end of October 2023.

As promised the Abu Dhabi Customs, during Gitex 2023 launched its expanded version of Invisible Customs System blockchain enabled Trade Chain as well as a cooperation agreement with Blockchain entity CargoX a blockchain platform in the logistics industry.  This advanced platform integrates with global blockchain platforms specialized in trade, providing benefits like improving customs operations performance, enhancing the reliability of information sources, and processing information proactively and quickly through a safe and secure platform.

The platform enhances the capability to monitor shipments, as well as the shipping and clearance procedures. It can also predict delivery times, contributing to reduced effort and costs associated with customs clearance. Furthermore, it facilitates seamless communication with trade partners and enhances supply chain security.

The platform also enhances the speed of data exchange with connected entities and guarantees the confidentiality of data shared with customs authorities and other entities using the platform. This results in a reduction of up to 80 percent in the time and effort required for goods clearance.

Rashed Lahej Al Mansoori, Director General of Abu Dhabi Customs, said that the launch of the advanced customs platform “Trade Chain” comes within the framework of Abu Dhabi Customs’ ongoing efforts to facilitate trade, bolster security and safeguard society, by adopting advanced technologies to enhance its customs system and consolidate its pioneering position, in line with the directives of the wise leadership, and the economic visions for the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and the UAE, through continuous foresight for the future and keeping pace with innovation in trade facilitation and the opportunities that the Fourth Industrial Revolution technology brings to increase efficiency and effectiveness and save time, effort and cost within all customs transactions, especially through establishing coordinated, effective, integrated and digital border management systems, ensuring invisible customs and governed borders that are both open and secure.

Abu Dhabi Customs, represented by Fahad Ghareeb Al Shamsi, Executive Director of Support Services Sector, also signed an agreement with CargoX on the sidelines of the Trade Chain platform launch at GITEX, represented by Vjeran Ortynski, VP of Business Development.” regarding data transfer via the blockchain platform.

The cooperation agreement aims to establish a framework for implementing blockchain projects and enhancing relations between the two parties to provide better services to Abu Dhabi Customs clients and clear shipments before arrival, as well as exchange expertise and information and meet business requirements and optimal use of the capabilities and expertise of both parties in areas of mutual interest.

Areas of cooperation include benefiting from the use of the Advance Cargo Information System, providing a blockchain data transfer solution to be presented to importers and exporters of goods through maritime ports in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi to facilitate the flow of maritime imports and exports.

According to a study conducted by the World Economic Forum, the global market value of blockchain technology in the customs field is expected to grow to $20 billion by 2025, saving up to $200 billion annually in global customs costs.

This is not the first agreement for CargoX in the region. In 2021, The Egyptian government through its Egyptian Customs Authorities, made mandatory Advance Cargo Information (ACI) declarations under its new Egyptian Customs law #207 for all cargo inbound to Egypt. The process is currently managed through the Blockchain enabled National Single Window for Foreign Trade platform (NAFEZA), built by Misr Technology Systems (MTS), where Blockchain enabled platform CargoX was authorized as the blockchain e-documents transfer gateway services provider.

The CargoX Blockchain platform helped the Egyptian government shorten cargo release times from 29 days to under 9 days, reduce import compliance cost from more than 600 USD to under 165 USD, and improve efficiency in cargo import risk assessment, tax revenue collection, and overall cargo flow transparency.

In August 2023, Uganda’s Presidential Advisory Committee on Exports and Industrial Development (PACEID) signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Technology Associates & CargoX consortium (TA-CargoX). The MoU aims to establish TradeXchange, a national trade facilitation platform. PACEID’s objective with this strategic technology partnership is to support exporters, resolve trade bottlenecks, easily comply with global trade standards and buttress Uganda’s ambitious goal of doubling its exports by 2026.

The CargoX Platform for Blockchain Document Transfer (BDT) is used by more than 115,000 companies worldwide, and has processed more than 5,3+ million electronic trade documents to date, without noticeable downtimes or operation failures.

China’s Bitcoin crypto mining and Blockchain hardware manufacturer, Canaan, has signed a crypto mining agreement with Oman’s Green Data city to pilot phase of a new crypto mining operation in Oman.

The new site will be installed in the facility of Green Data City, and under the agreement, Canaan has the option to expand the total capacity to up to 100MW.

The crypto mining operations in Oman will start in Q4 of 2023.

In August 2023 Oman’s Green Data City and Abu Dhabi’s Phoenix Group signed an agreement to develop a 150MW crypto-mining farm in Oman. The new farm will be set up in Green Data City was noted that it will be operational by Q2 2024, becoming one of the largest crypto-mining data centers in the region.

Phoenix Group is experienced in the development, operation, and management of crypto data centers. It is also the exclusive distributor of industry-leading mining equipment, MicroBT.

Oman was chosen as a location due to the long-term security provided by the Green Data City mining license, the entities’ common vision to develop cryptocurrencies mining and AI applications with the Ministry of Transport, Communication and IT (MTCIT), and the cooler weather in Oman, in particular in the region of Dhofar, which reduces the cooling energy consumption to a minimum, making the sultanate a sustainable destination for mining in the region.

The deployment will start with the new Avalon Box mining container featuring immersion cooling. The project also has the potential to deploy Canaan’s other advanced products, including the latest series A14 Avalon miners with a record efficiency of 20J/T, later in

Green Data City LLC is the company that operates the first license for sustainable crypto-mining in Oman since 2022. International mining companies can register and operate in Green Data City with long term agreements. The first phase of development consists of 200MW of mining capacity, the second phase will reach 400MW hyperscale data center capacity with natural cooling, renewable energies and downstream applications.

UAE Emirates Airlines has signed an agreement with Shell Aviation to supply 300,000 gallons of blended sustainable aviation fuel and will track this using Blockchain enabled platform Avelia at its international hub in Dubai.

Avelia is a blockchain powered book-and-claim solution that provides users with fully traceable environmental attributes of SAF to help decarbonize their air travel.

Avelia is powered by Shell Aviation and Accenture, with support from Energy Web together with American Express Global business travel. Through Avelia, Emirates will purchase the physical SAF and associated environmental attributes to help decarbonize its Scope 1 related emissions, while Scope 3 environmental attributes associated to the same physical SAF will be purchased by Shell Corporate Travel to help decarbonize its related business travel.

According to the news, the first SAF delivery under the agreement is expected to commence before the end of the year, making it the first time that SAF is supplied through the DXB airport fuelling system, the airline said in a statement.

SAF can be blended with conventional jet fuel at a ratio of up to 50%, creating an aviation fuel that is significantly lower in lifecycle carbon emissions. In its neat form, SAF can reduce lifecycle emissions by up to 80% compared to conventional jet fuel.

Emirates President Tim Clark said: “We are proud to work in partnership with Shell to make a SAF supply available for Emirates in Dubai for the first time, and to utilize the Blockchain Avelia platform that provides business travellers the flexibility to align their sustainability targets and reduce their environmental footprint when travelling.”

Chu Yong-Yi, Vice President of Shell Corporate Travel said: “Emirates and Shell have a long-standing commercial relationship, and it is fantastic to build on this to now work together on decarbonisation. This agreement marks a step forward for the aviation industry in the UAE. Enabling SAF to be supplied at DXB for the first time is an important milestone, and a perfect example of how the different parts of the aviation value chain have a role to play in unlocking progress on SAF. We hope that this can act as a springboard for more action on SAF across the aviation industry in the UAE and region, delivering another step forward for our net zero emissions journey.”

In May this year, Emirates airline announced a $200 million sustainability R&D fund aimed to reduce the impact of fossil fuels in aviation, with Clark saying “with the current pathways available to airlines in terms of emissions reduction, our industry won’t be able to hit net zero targets in the prescribed timeline”.

In a recent flurry of signing agreements between Dubai Civil Aviation Authority with Dubai Aviation City and Dubai Integrated Economic Zones Authority (DIEZA), an agreement to link data of both DIEZA and Dubai Civil Aviation Authority was signed.

According to the press release, these agreements aim to foster enhanced cooperation and integrated link using ‘Web Service’ technology for issuing commercial activity permits in the aviation sector, thereby enabling immediate approvals from DCAA for commercial licensing transactions in the Al Maktoum International Airport and Dubai Airport Freezone. It also strengthens institutional information and data management cooperation, facilitating systematic integration.

On this remarkable milestone, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said: “This MoU is a strategic milestone in reshaping Dubai’s aviation industry and consolidates the emirate’s position as a global leader in digital transformation in the aviation industry. Integrating cutting-edge technology and digital solutions into Dubai’s aviation operations is not just a business strategy but a fundamental dedication to customers, partners, and the city’s future. By creating an environment that encourages the synergy of technology and human ingenuity, Dubai strives to achieve unprecedented efficiency and customer satisfaction.”

As per the news, the partnership agreement between the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority and the Dubai Integrated Economic Zones Authority entails the integrated link of data and information through a fully-integrated and activated blockchain technology connection enhancing the speed and accuracy of service provision.