A first major step to achieve this would be some significant action on the government’s part. This would help to turn foreign investors to our country and the investment massive opportunities here.
Government support in terms of events, networking and acquiring the skills needed would be a boon to our prospects. There is a deficit of programmers, coders, designers and engineers, whereas other Middle Eastern countries are able to count on government funding that goes towards specialised tech education.
It would also lead to more widespread media coverage, at local, national and international level, which is critical for a tech ecosystem’s success.
In terms of the wider economy, it is now clear that a focus on entrepreneurship in countries that have been dependent on commodities for economic prosperity is the way forward. Along with countries such as Saudi Arabia and Russia, Iraq has suffered from the global drop of 60% in oil prices in recent years.
In order to protect itself from a similar development in future and to move away from a dependence on oil, Saudi Arabia has begun to channel focus and investment into encouraging entrepreneurship.
This is something that the Iraqi government could do too in order to effect positive change in the wider economy.
While we face a number of important challenges now and in coming years, the Iraqi tech ecosystem has developed a strong foundation of which, with continued dedication and hard work, we are optimistic for the next stage in our tech ecosystem’s development.