Israeli technology firm 'helped Saudi Arabia define its Vision 2030': reports

Israeli technology firm 'helped Saudi Arabia define its Vision 2030': reports
An Israeli technology company reportedly provided its services to Saudi Arabia to help the kingdom define elements of its Vision 2030, by scanning Saudi citizens data, according to reports.
2 min read
14 July, 2022
Saudi Arabia has yet to formally recognise Israel [Getty]

An Israeli technological company helped Saudi Arabia to define elements of its Vision 2030, according to Israeli media.

IntuView - self proclaimed pioneers in "artificial intuition" - provided its services to Riyadh and its ambitious economic plan by scanning Saudi citizens' data, the firm’s founder Dr Shmuel Bar told i24News.

IntuView reportedly examined data related to Saudi Arabia allowing women to drive - after women had been prohibited from doing so for decades - Bar said, as the 2030 vision partly aimed to promote a softer and less conservative image of the kingdom.

Saudi has not formally recognised Israel because of its mistreatment of Palestinians, but Barr noted normalisation is not limited to political standings.

"Technological normalisation [has] preceded diplomatic normalisation between Israel and Saudi Arabia," Bar said.

"In light of the political changes and security challenges in the region, Israel has turned into the big sister of many Arab countries due to common challenges and risks, most notably the Iranian nuclear file."

IntuView’s data examination reportedly revealed that wider Arab nationalism is on the decline, with people more likely to identify and display loyalty to their own states.

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"For example, Saudi's loyalty to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has become more than their loyalty to Arabism or other issues," Bar said, highlighting regional and geopolitical challenges as the reason behind this.

The founder states "Israel's technological superiority has given it a regional power", as "Israeli companies operate in Arab countries that do not have diplomatic relations with Israel".

He says companies do so by providing services in technology alongside cyber and national security to "enhance stability" across the region.

Bar gave no further details on the specifics behind IntuView's alleged involvement in helping Saudi Arabia develop its 2030 vision. 

Israeli technology firms have been slammed by human rights groups for selling spyware and other intrusive software to authoritarian states which have allegedly been used to target activists.

US President Joe Biden arrived in Israel on Wednesday and will travel to the kingdom on Friday as part of a tour aiming to expand "regional economic and security operation", according to the White House.

Israeli Finance Minister Avigdor Lieberman said he hopes the tour will lead to a common Middle East market that includes Saudi Arabia.

Israel normalised relations with four Arab countries under a 2020 US diplomatic drive - that received Riyadh's blessing.