The Lebanese ICT industry, which records sustainable growth year after year, is positioning itself as a force to reckon with at Gitex Dubai 2005, with a group of leading Lebanese companies showcasing their products and solutions under the umbrella of the Professional Computer Association (PCA) Lebanon.

Driven by wider territorial expansion for the export of software services, the Lebanese ICT industry will use its participation in Gitex to consolidate its presence in the Gulf and the Middle East, its biggest and most important markets. The Lebanese pavilion at Gitex will be located in Sheikh Rashid Hall, E9, at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre, spread over an area of 156 square metres.
‘Information Technology continues to get top priority in the markets of the Middle East in general and the Gulf in particular, driven by governments that believe in investing in IT and a corporate sector that uses technology for higher productivity,’ Michel Nseir, Head of Lebanese Pavilion at GITEX Dubai 2005. ‘The Lebanese ICT industry is keen to reach out to the high-potential markets of the region by participating in different trade exhibitions, especially Gitex Dubai, which is undoubtedly the most powerful and dynamic platform for achieving this goal.

 ‘The Lebanese ICT industry is strongly export-focused, and we would like to build on this strength during our Gitex participation. According to a recent survey, one-third of ICT firms thrive on exports, with as much as 70 per cent of their revenue coming from outside markets. The software industry was a major beneficiary of this focus and achieved a sustainable growth rate compared to previous years,’ said Nseir. ‘The Lebanese Software market reported 75 per cent of all receipts coming from the regional and Western markets, with more than 85 per cent of firms naming the GCC countries as their lead market.’

The participating Lebanese ICT companies include ACT (Automation Computer Technology), Software Design, National PC, LibanCall, Geovision, Born Interactive, Soft Flow, IDAL and NIT. The participants will showcase an impressive portfolio of software solutions and hardware products in diverse sectors, with a special focus on Banking, Retail, Education and General Trade.

‘The participation in Gitex helps us build stronger bonds with Middle East customers who rely on Lebanese ICT vendors for delivering world class IT solutions at competitive prices and strong after-sales service by leveraging high quality manpower with the best of breed technologies,’ said Nseir. ‘Demand for Lebanese IT products has picked up further momentum because of strong penetration of IT based solutions in business processes. We are now strongly positioned to increase our market share in the region.’

‘This is the eighth consecutive year the PCA is bringing top IT companies from Lebanon to GITEX Dubai. In addition to providing high visibility to Lebanese IT products, PCA lobbies with the Lebanese Government to step up measures to boost the ICT industry in the country and conducts collaborative campaigns for improving the IT environment for its members,’ said Nseir.

Lebanon continues to be one of the most vibrant IT markets in the region, indicating that the industry will continue to be on the upswing because of the strong IT culture among the public. According to a recent survey, 79 per cent of all computer users in Lebanon use the Internet to some degree. The Internet is maturing considerably, with assurance from the government to bring the prices further down and providing advanced technologies to the users.

‘The education system too is geared to producing highly competent IT professionals and entrepreneurs,’ said Nseir. ‘Today, the ICT sector provides jobs for nearly 7,000 people. This number is growing significantly and is set to multiply in the near future, as our markets expand and we get large size contracts from our clients in the Gulf and the Middle East.’