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Tamkeen, the labor fund in the Kingdom of Bahrain, has been one of the main pillars of support for the country’s burgeoning startup and entrepreneurial ecosystems. On that count, its contribution to the fast-growing Bahraini economy, as well as the ongoing digital transformation process, has been enormous.

What’s even more admirable is that Tamkeen’s contributions come on several fronts. Its various programs targeted at bolstering the ICT sector, for example, has yielded the desired outcome by turning the Kingdom into a regional hub for technology innovation and entrepreneurship. 

Among other perks, the labor fund’s increasing focus on the ICT sector has also helped create high-quality job opportunities for thousands of Bahraini professionals. 

Speaking on that, CEO and Director of Etisalcom, Mr. Rashid Al-Snan said: “The ICT sector has become the main bearer of development. Today we see more integration of technologies in the banking sector such as financial technology (Fintech), in the logistical sector we see it via Blockchain technology, and in the tourism sector through customer service applications. Thus, investing in the development of the ICT sector is crucial to raise productivity rates and developing the National economy.”

Mr. Al-Snan called for directing a greater part of Tamkeen’s budget to support the ICT sector in Bahrain. He added: “In the past, Tamkeen has played a major role in supporting this sector, and we stress today the importance of strengthening this role, especially in this era of digital transformation.”

In addition to that, Tamkeen has also played a pivotal role in helping numerous nascent-but-thriving sectors such as blockchain and artificial intelligence (AI) gain a foothold in the country. For maximal efficiency on that front, Tamkeen has also been accommodating training centers and mentorship programs for young, aspiring professionals. 

Elaborating on that, Mr. Nawaf Abdul Rahman, director of IT at the Mohamed bin Khalifa Specialist Cardiology Centre, said: “We need to urge the training centers to focus on modern technology, such as data science, artificial intelligence, and blockchain technology, which is the backbone of the digital economy.”

Similarly, Tamkeen’s active support to various accelerator programs has done a commendable job by paving the way for a whole new wave of startups to emerge and establish themselves on a global scale. 

Overall, Tamkeen is widely regarded as one of the driving forces fuelling the Kingdom’s attempts to look beyond its oil-driven economy and establish itself as an innovation and knowledge-driven, modern economy.