First YouTube space facility in Middle East region opens in Dubai

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Google-owned video platform YouTube opened a "YouTube Space" in Dubai, the first-of-its-kind in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

Located at Dubai Studio City, the YouTube facility aims "to support the growing creator community in the MENA region by giving them access to a state-of-the-art production space," Xinhua cited state news agency WAM as saying.

The space, which is the tenth in the world, is dedicated to YouTube content creators who would have free access to high-end audio, visual and editing equipment in addition to training programmes, workshops and courses.

More than 440,000 creators have visited the nine YouTube Space facilities around the world since the programme was first launched in 2012, said David Ripert, Head of YouTube Spaces in Europe, Middle East and Africa.

"Creators are the heartbeat of YouTube and supporting them has long been one of our most important priorities," Ripert was quoted as saying.

"As a platform, YouTube provides a blank canvas for creative expression and Space will be one of the tools creators use to tell their own stories," Ripert noted.

The MENA region has more than 200 YouTube channels with over a million subscribers, and over 30,000 channels are subscribed by more than 10,000 users, Robert Kyncl, Chief Business Officer of YouTube, was quoted as saying.

The Arab world has experienced a 160-percent increase in the number of channels uploaded from MENA countries in the past three years.