Careem, the leading ride-hailing service in the Middle East and North Africa, has announced the launch of a new market, Palestine, as part of its broader commitment to better the region. The launch also highlights the opportunity the Palestinian tech ecosystem provides to local businesses.
Careem’s investment in Palestine falls in line with the company’s commitment to create one million jobs in the Middle East and North Africa region by 2018. At the same time, launching the app in Palestine is set to empower the local population through the transfer of knowledge and skills, with the possibility of stimulating advances in technology and other sectors from communications to logistics.
Careem has already announced to hire 100 software engineers from Pakistan.
“At Careem, we are committed to solving local problems in our region by providing access to reliable transportation and aiding in the creation of jobs. But our region would not be complete without including Palestine,” said Mudassir Sheikha, CEO and co-founder, Careem. “It is our sincere hope that our entry into Palestine will encourage other startups and technology companies to recognize the potential of the country as place of investment in this region.”
Mobility is one of the most important and vital aids to economic growth, and Palestine’s local transportation issues have long been a key inhibitor. Careem’s introduction to the market will improve the quality of life for its people by increasing access to safe, reliable and affordable transportation.
Careem aims to boost the local economy by enabling residents to commute hassle-free with greater convenience. The company also provides much needed opportunities for current and future Captains to work or supplement their income through the creation of jobs. The Palestinian Economic Policy Research Institute identified the vital importance of the transport and communication sector to the economy in terms of moving individuals and goods, and yet the transport and storage sector contributed just 1.7% to GDP in 2014.
Careem will begin operations in Ramallah this month on 15 June 2017 with plans to extend into more cities in the near future. On this date, residents will be able to request a car type via the Careem app. A local company established in 2012, Careem now operates in more than 50 cities across 12 countries and hosts over 10 million users and 250,000 Captains (drivers) in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia region.