Chinese tech giant, Huawei, remains committed to the advancement of 5G technology in the Middle East, helping to establish the region as a centre of excellence for next generation connectivity, according to senior company officials.
In a recent media roundtable, Charles Yang, president of Huawei Middle East, explored a plethora of opportunities for 5G to expedite growth in the region following the COVID-19 pandemic, and outlined clear opportunities to support local government, societies and businesses alike.
“Today, ICT companies in the region have a critical role to play in the evolution of digital economies working alongside governments, NGOs, and local communities to harness technologies like 5G to spur industrial innovation and investment.
“The outbreak has led to increased demand for ICT solutions, specifically in areas like 5G amidst a boost in network usage. There is simply a huge amount of data traffic now being generated for personal and business use, and 5G is the best option to ease such network pressure,” he said.
The Middle East was among the first regions in the world to rollout 5G at scale, and many regulators took a collaborative approach to 5G spectrum allocation and licensing, with large-scale rollouts beginning as early as 2018.
“The use cases for 5G are practically unlimited, although certain sectors can stand to benefit more in current circumstances, such as healthcare, education, transportation, and energy, to mention a few,” said Yang.
“But transitioning towards a smarter society, in general, requires strong partnerships between the public and private sectors. The need to develop the 5G ecosystem, including the talent ecosystem, is clearer than ever.”
One area that collaboration is being seen is in the concept of 5G+X; the combination of 5G connectivity with other advanced AI, IoT, and cloud technologies. In last year’s GSMA report “The Mobile Economy Middle East & North Africa”, the telecom industry body estimated that there would be around 45 million 5G connections across the region by 2025, with the contribution of mobile technology and services to the MENA region reaching more than $220 billion in value by 2023.
Yang believes that the Middle East and North Africa region’s relentless investment in research and development will help to keep it at the cutting edge of next generation connectivity.
“It’s with long-term R&D investment that we have been able to lead the pack in multiple technology domains, and continue to earn the respect and trust of our customers despite significant external pressure,” maintains Yang, who cites close cooperation with external bodies as instrumental to its success in the Middle East. “We’re continuing to work closely with governments, customers, and partners to provide services that help them to pursue digital transformation and realize national development visions.”
Yang also reiterated his company’s commitment to providing the securest network infrastructure to operators across the region.
“We work with governments, industries, and our customers in an open, transparent, and constructive way to maximize the benefits of ICT infrastructure while improving its security. We are fully aware of our responsibilities as a global ICT supplier,” he said.
Over the past 30 years, Huawei has worked with carriers to build more than 1,500 networks, providing network services to over 3 billion people in more than 170 countries and regions.
“We have put in place a comprehensive cyber security assurance system, and have a proven track record in that field. Our cyber security practices have won the trust of partners across the global value chain. Huawei's 5G products have passed multiple third-party security certifications, and Huawei has become the first company to gain the CC EAL4+ certificate,” Yang concluded.