Egypt’s National AI Strategy

Strategies and Action Plans

The National AI Strategy of Egypt represents a comprehensive plan to harness the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to drive the nation’s development and secure its position as a leader in the African and Arab regions. Spearheaded by the National Council for Artificial Intelligence (NCAI) and backed by the Egyptian government, this strategy aims to integrate AI across various sectors to enhance efficiency, promote innovation, and support sustainable development goals.

Vision and Mission

The overarching vision of Egypt’s National AI Strategy is to exploit AI technologies to support the achievement of Egypt’s sustainable development goals for the benefit of all Egyptians. Additionally, the strategy seeks to position Egypt as a key player in regional cooperation within the African and Arab regions and to establish the country as an active international participant in the AI domain.

The mission of the strategy is to create a robust AI industry in Egypt by developing the necessary skills, technology, ecosystem, infrastructure, and governance mechanisms to ensure sustainability and competitiveness.

Strategic Pillars and Enablers

The strategy is built upon four main pillars and supported by four enablers:

1. AI for Government:

  • Rapid adoption of AI technologies to automate government processes and integrate AI into decision-making to increase efficiency and transparency.
  • Improve public services and governmental performance through AI applications.

2. AI for Development:

  • Apply AI in various economic sectors to achieve higher economic growth and competitiveness.
  • Key sectors include agriculture, healthcare, economic planning, manufacturing, Arabic Natural Language Processing (NLP), and finance.

3. Capacity Building:

  • Prepare the Egyptian population for the age of AI through general awareness, formal education, and professional training.
  • Focus on building a skilled workforce to meet market needs and foster technology transfer.

4. International Activities:

  • Foster regional and international cooperation in AI.
  • Champion AI initiatives and actively participate in international AI forums and projects.

Supporting Enablers:

  • Governance: Establish ethical frameworks, laws, and regulations to ensure responsible AI use.
  • Data: Develop strategies for data collection, management, and monetisation.
  • Ecosystem: Support the private sector, research institutions, and civil society in AI initiatives.
  • Infrastructure: Ensure fair access to computing resources and other necessary assets.

Implementation Phases

The strategy is set to be implemented in phases, with the first phase focusing on training professionals, starting pilot projects within government, and building regional and international partnerships. The initial phase will also prepare for subsequent phases that aim to grow the AI ecosystem, particularly in supporting startups.

Challenges and Opportunities

Egypt’s AI strategy acknowledges both the opportunities and challenges presented by AI adoption. Opportunities include enhanced efficiency, improved public services, and significant economic growth. However, challenges such as brain drain, resistance from the private sector, and the need for substantial investments in AI projects must be addressed. The strategy emphasises setting clear Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to measure AI adoption and impact effectively.