Elon Musk, co-founder and CEO of Tesla, the California-based automaker and energy storage company, is expected to attend the company’s launch event in Dubai on Monday, February 13.
The invite-only event will be held at the Armani Hotel in the Burj Khalifa.
Tesla’s launch in the UAE will mark its first official presence in the Middle East. The company is already recruiting its Dubai-based team, with jobs for a service advisor, service manager and service technician in Dubai currently being advertised on Tesla’s website.
Musk will be in the UAE to speak at the fifth edition of the World Government Summit (WGS) the day before, which was confirmed by the UAE’s Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future, HE Mohammed Al Gergawi. “For the first time in the region, we will host Elon Musk, Founder and CEO of Tesla Motors and SpaceX and one of the most important visionaries of the 21st century,” HE Al Gergawi said to media.
Musk came under scrutiny recently after deciding to stay on President Donald Trump’s economic advisory council, in spite of facing criticism tied to the administration's immigration executive order barring citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the US.
He took to Twitter to explain that his goal was to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy and to help make humanity a multi-planet civilisation. In a series of tweets, he also said: “I understand the perspective of those who object to my attending this meeting, but I believe at this time that engaging on critical issues will on balance serve the greater good."
Also on Twitter, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick announced last Thursday he would leave the advisory council, after internal pressure from employees and the hashtag #DeleteUber spreading on social media.
South Africa-born entrepreneur Musk is also known for founding Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX), a California-based private spaceflight company. Reportedly, Musk's long-term vision is to reach Mars with reusable rockets and eventually build a self-sustaining civilisation on Mars.
In 2013, Musk released a concept for a new form of transportation, Hyperloop, an invention of high-speed futuristic transport via tubes. Dubai recently announced its plans to build a Hyperloop line linking it to Abu Dhabi.
Musk is reportedly also working on his new transportation idea – the so-called ‘tunnel project’ – to help relieve Los Angeles’ traffic problems.
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