Huawei and the African Union have signed through H.E. Amb. Thomas Kwesi Quartey, the Deputy Chair Person of the African Union Commission and Philippe Wang, Huawei’s Vice-President for the Northern African region, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to consolidate their collaboration and establish the necessary arrangements to ensure an effective cooperation on ICT matters. The main goal of the MoU is to strengthen their partnership in the following areas: Broadband, Internet of Things (IoT), Cloud Computing, 5G and artificial intelligence.
The MoU offers new opportunities for the different African Union departments to share experience with Huawei in the area of ICT project management and delivery in support of African continental ICT development, including Cybersecurity, e-Health, e-Education and other related applications. Signed for a 3-year period, this agreement builds on a previous the MoU signed in February 2015. It aims to establish closer collaboration and information exchange between Huawei and the African Union. Both parties are also working together to source local talents to train them for future digital challenges in the tech ecosystem. This initiative also aims to increase employment opportunities for young people by providing them with ICT knowledge and skills.
Africa has become the second largest mobile market in the world after Asia. Deloitte estimates that by 2020, 660 millions Africans will be equipped with a smartphone and the penetration rate is forecast to reach to 50% level by the end of 2023 according to the GMSA Intelligence. On this continent where infrastructures are still limited, the digital transformation offers huge opportunities and will allow connections to be distributed with a high density on the entire African continent. The deployment of news technologies in Africa will also improve the performance of key sectors that have a significant impact on the daily lives of Africans, such as health, transport, media and energy.
Philippe Wang, Huawei’s Vice-President for the Northern African region, in charge of public relations and communication, says: “This collaboration shows AU’s continuous trust in Huawei. And by this action should we put a total end to the rumours of data leakage from AU by Huawei equipment, as AU have totally audited their IT system for the whole organization, and nothing corroborates what was said in media reports one year ago. Huawei, strategic partner for the digitalization of Africa is committed to providing the African Union with a unique experience that meets their expectations and needs, especially in terms of technology transfer and connectivity.”
Thomas Kwesi Quartey, the Deputy Chair Person of the African Union Commission (AUC), says: “Under this agreement, we are pleased to consolidate our existing partnership with Huawei, a leading group in the fields of innovation and technological research. It is essential that we work closely with our partners to meet the digital transformation challenges of Africa. ”
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