Technology (222)

Transform Or Die — The Value And Purpose Of Digital Transformation

It is not enough for business to simply stick to the fundamental products and services they have always offered. In the digital age it's disrupt or die.

According to the IDC, digital transformation is essential for an organisation to adapt quickly to changing markets. Business opportunities are fleeting, the IDC said, and if your business does not have the agility to seize them, your competition will.

The IDC said that digitally transformed organisations can react quickly to changing market dynamics, and adapt their strategies quickly and on-demand. Companies that are not transformed will miss out.

One example of this, are cellular network operators around the world.

Not too long ago, offering mobile voice and messaging services was a game changer. Then came mobile data. Now these are simply the expected functions of a network.

"They are fundamental, but not enough" said Lu Baoqiang, Huawei vice-president for the Southern Africa Region. To remain relevant, businesses have to adapt to new technologies and transform.

Huawei defines digital transformation as the application of new digital capabilities including tools, platforms and systems to processes, operations, product design, and services.

Baoqiang said that the aim of such a transformation is three-fold: increase revenue, improve efficiency and decrease costs, and enhance the customer experience.

"When we talk about digital transformation, we have to realise it's all about how you can engage your customers," said Baoqiang. While new technology is essential to a digital transformation, it must be in support of the primary purpose of the exercise — making things better for your customers.

Baoqiang said that, broadly, there are two forms digital transformation can take. The first is where existing operations are streamlined using new technologies. The second is where a business expands its offerings into new digital frontiers.

Huawei has partnered with several mobile network operators in Africa in their digital transformation, Baoqiang said. One example is Safaricom in Kenya. With Safaricom in Kenya, Huawei has helped implement financial technology in the form of services like M-PESA and Fuliza. These have unlocked a whole new digital economy in the country.

Huawei and Safaricom have jointly received the "Business of Tomorrow" award for the most innovative service at AfricaCom 2019. The award recognises the two companies for offering Fuliza, a mobile money overdraft service that runs on the M-PESA platform. Fuliza lets users with insufficient funds in their M-PESA accounts borrow money to complete their M-PESA transactions.

The service was launched in January 2019, and has been gaining popularity in Kenya where Safaricom has over 23.6 million M-PESA users. Kenyans transacted over KES 6.2 billion (R900 million) in the first month of Fuliza's launch. Fuliza has disbursed KES 140 billion (R2 billion) since January, processing 13 loans per second. The companies say that the service has a very low default rate due to its purposeful nature.



Why African Mobile Networks Must Invest In 4G

Even with the 5G era already upon us, investment in 4G/LTE networks is still vitally important for operators in sub-Saharan Africa and must remain a core focus of network construction for the immediate future. This is according to David Chen, Vice-President, Huawei Southern Africa.

"Currently, the mobile broadband penetration rate in Africa is only 47%, while 4G penetration rate is merely 10%," Chen said.

"Insufficient coverage causes LTE users to fall back to the 2G or 3G networks, resulting in significant decline in user experience. It also leads to congestion on the 2G and 3G networks and makes it difficult to release spectrum used by 2G and 3G."

Chen said that LTE and 5G complement each other and are evolving in parallel. In the next few years, 5G will mainly be used in more industrial communications.

LTE will remain the primary choice for global mobile communications through 2025. It will form the basic layer of national networks, especially when it comes to the mobile broadband access.

"It will take a long time for 5G to provide nationwide continuous coverage. Before that, enhanced LTE networks can guarantee optimal user experience for 5G users, including services such as VR, AR, and cloud gaming," said Chen.

He said that it is important for operators to invest in 4G to secure future growth, as it is estimated that there will be an additional 80 million LTE users in sub-Saharan Africa by 2025.

Driven by this growth, LTE traffic in sub-Saharan Africa will increase by a factor of 8.8. By 2025, about 80% of all data traffic in the region will be over an LTE network.

LTE will also be the main source of future revenue for operators.

"According to GSMA Intelligence, 2G and 3G users in sub-Saharan Africa will gradually migrate to 4G," said Chen. "By 2025, the proportion of 2G users will drop from 46% to 12%."

Part of the reason for the migration to 4G is because the ecosystem is mature.

"The price of feature phones supporting VoLTE in the sub-Saharan Africa market has been as low as $25," Chen said.

Since 5G equipment is already available, there is an opportunity for operators to build out their 4G networks while ensuring that they can evolve to 5G in future.

Chen offered the following tips to operators to ensure they are ready for 5G:

* All future equipment installations should be 5G ready, allowing easy upgrades to 5G through software updates.

* Software should support multi-standard spectrum sharing to improve spectrum efficiency, and to allow the smooth migration of 2G and 3G users.

* Networks must support 4G and 5G coordination, in terms of spectrum, operation and maintenance. This will ensure that users have a consistent experience as we enter the 5G era.

* The value of existing ICT infrastructure, such as base station sites, must be maximised to avoid overlapping services and wasted resources. This would mean boosting the capacity and coverage of every station for optimum efficiency.

* Carriers should explore the business case for all possible 5G innovations when building 4G networks, and not just embrace 5G for its own sake. This will mean building business models around IoT, video, live broadcast, augmented reality, and virtual reality.

* It is important that operators build partnerships with providers that can support the ongoing spectrum evolution with fast site upgrades and large-capacity solutions. The idea is to maximise the value of 4G networks, and smoothly evolve to 5G without unnecessary infrastructure investment.

Safaricom, Huawei Receive Most Innovative Service Award At AfricaCom

Safaricom and Huawei have jointly received the prestigious Most Innovative Service “the Business of Tomorrow” award at AfricaCom 2019 in Cape Town.

Overdraft service, known as “Fuliza”. This service enables users with insufficient funds in their M-PESA accounts to borrow money to complete their M-PESA transactions. The service was officially launched in January 2019 and has been gaining popularity in Kenya where Safaricom has over 23.6 million M-PESA users. Kenyans transacted over KES 6.2 Billion (USD 62M) in Fuliza's first month after its launch.

Michael Joseph, CEO, Safaricom said “M-PESA continues to play a leading role in deepening financial inclusion in the country. Fuliza enriches our mobile financial services portfolio further fulfilling our promise to always provide our customers with relevant products and services that meet them at their point of need. We are glad to partner with Huawei in bringing this commitment to life.”

Fuliza is empowered by the Huawei Mobile Money Finance Overdraft Platform which allows design, development and deployment of innovate finance products. This platform was created to enable credit overdraft facilities in multiple payment scenarios in a highly secure and stable way.

Over the years, Huawei has been working with Safaricom in improving its mobile financial services and developing new products, especially for loans and savings which can bring many benefits to individuals but also to SMEs to help grow their businesses.

David Chen, Director of Marketing & Solution Sales for Huawei Southern Africa Region said: “Financial services requires security and stability. These two elements are in the DNA of all Huawei’s ICT solutions.

We have focused on building a world-class application programming interface (API) to enable the local ICT ecosystem to tap into M-PESA to serve the needs of our client for business success and nurture the digital economy from a macro perspective.”

AfricaCom is Africa’s biggest telecoms and technology event which takes place annually in Cape Town, South Africa. This year, during this 3-day event Huawei has showcased its end-to-end 5G ability, facilitating the industry’s digital transformation through innovative tools, platforms and solutions and explored new opportunities that are emerging for the industry from these new technologies.

Huawei Cloud Kunpeng Cloud Services Usher in Africa’s Multi-Architecture Computing Era

HUAWEI CLOUD has released Kunpeng ECS (Elastic Cloud Server) cloud services and Partner Program 2.0 at AfricaCom, the continent’s largest annual telecom event.

The Kunpeng-powered cloud services will be made available to African customers by the end of December, and will offer 15% faster multi-core computing power and a 30% higher performance/price ratio than the industry average.

These cloud services offer an unprecedented capability to meet the ever-shifting requirements of a diverse range of public and private institutions.

Speaking at the Huawei Cloud, AI Forum, Rui Houwei, President of HUAWEI CLOUD Africa, noted the significance of recent technological breakthroughs.
"The computing industry has gone through the mainframe computer, minicomputer, and x86 server stages and will move to the multi-architecture computing stage," he said.

"The computing power previously available only in the x86 architecture, is now available in different architectures, allowing for the use of appropriate computing power for each specific application. “

This January, Huawei launched Kunpeng 920, the industry's highest-performing 7nm server processor in the Kunpeng architecture. The HUAWEI CLOUD ECS is powered by the Kunpeng servers, and supports multi-architecture computing. "

Rui also expressed optimism at Kunpeng’s capabilities for the local market, "Huawei is able to innovate across the entire stack ranging from chips and servers, to cloud platforms. In-depth collaboration between chips, hardware, and software enable Kunpeng cloud services to deliver unparalleled performance. We are deeply committed to providing diversified cloud services and solutions, to help public institutions and private companies take intelligence and mobility to even greater heights. "

At the forum, Huawei also outlined its Partner Program 2.0 initiative, which offers crucial support for partners, with regard to online and onsite training, market expansion, marketing activities, and technical understanding.

In Africa alone, HUAWEI CLOUD has established partnerships with over 65 partners spanning diverse industries, including telecom, finance, manufacturing, education, retail, and logistics, as well as the public sector. “Such wide-ranging collaboration is likely to result in unique, and broadly-shared benefits across the ecosystem,” said Rui.

According to an IDC report, South Africa's spending in public cloud services will reach R11.5 billion in 2022, a three-fold increase from 2017. This expansion is projected to create 112,000 jobs. By 2020, cloud services will account for 67% of enterprises' total spending in IT infrastructure and software.

More than 85% of enterprises are expected to use the hybrid-cloud or multi-cloud architecture.

Huawei has been operating in Africa for over 20 years, and has developed an in-depth understanding of the requirements, opportunities, and challenges faced by African customers. Its local teams are fully equipped to provide premium services for customers spanning 54 different African countries.

HUAWEI CLOUD has leveraged its 30 years of accumulated technological development and expertise in the ICT field, to deliver high-quality full-stack cloud services at the best possible value.

HUAWEI CLOUD services were officially launched in South Africa this February, making it the first cloud service provider to utilize local data centers in that country. Over the past eight months, HUAWEI CLOUD has experienced rapid growth in the African market, notably in South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, and Zambia.

Huawei Releases New White Paper On The Future Of Fixed-Wireless Access

Huawei has released its 4G/5G Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) Broadband Whitepaper, which outlines how fixed wireless can bring broadband to all.

According to Huawei, the high speeds and large capacity of 4G and 5G connectivity have made it possible to offer a Gbps broadband experience by utilising wireless networks, rather than requiring copper or fibre networks.

Thanks to advances in FWA technology, those who previously did not have access to digital services can now access connectivity up to 10Mbps.

This is due to FWA lowering the barrier of entry to connectivity by drastically reducing costs when compared to fixed or mobile broadband.

FWA can also offer alternatives to copper-based broadband solutions, such as ADSL, by offering an average rate of 10-20Mbps at affordable prices and without the requirement of copper installations.

Those who want fibre-like connectivity, but can’t access fibre in their area, can also use fixed wireless to attain speeds of 50-100 Mbps during busy hours.

4G FWA solutions such as those mentioned above are already being used in over 120 countries and across 230 networks, servicing 100 million global households – and these numbers will continue to rise.

 While FWA services using 4G are well established, 5G FWA is a way to full-scale 5G deployments. 5G will take FWA to the next level, enabling various modern technologies, as well as those that will inevitably be released in the future - including smart homes, 4K, and AR/VR services.

5G will also offer businesses improved connectivity, enabling them to streamline their practices and lower their expenses.

Bringing connectivity to new locations

According to a recent ITU report, 50% of the world’s population will still not have access to the Internet by the end of 2019.

Developing nations also tend to have significantly slower connection speeds than developed countries, with broadband speeds failing to pass 10Mbps in some countries.

However, ever-improving wireless technologies can help to improve the reach and reliability of Internet connections in these nations.

The implementation of wireless fibre in such countries brings with it a series of benefits:

  • Wireless broadband can bring coverage to over 90% of a developing country’s population – including urban and rural areas.
  • 5G and 5G offer a fibre-like experience, with improved speeds and reliability.
  • Wireless broadband allows for the speedy deployment of connectivity, as there is no need to dig trenches and install cables.
  • Developing wireless broadband infrastructure enables a smooth transition to 5G due to the installation of compatible network hardware.

Implication for Africa

Fixed wireless access has emerged as one of the most significant growth drivers around the world, as explosive user growth is seen in both developed markets as well as Emerging countries like South Africa. Many believe that eventually 5G FWA will have a significant impact on fixed broadband just as 2G had on fixed voice more than 20 years ago.

Fixed broadband subscriptions in Sub Saharan Africa are estimated to be 6.6 million in 2018. This market can grow by up to three-fold by 2023 according to Ovum, a London based global technology research and advisory firm.

According to Ovum’s research released in the beginning of this year, there will be strong demand and rapid market growth for home broadband in sub Saharan Africa in the coming 5 years. The number of broadband subscriptions in SSA will increase from 7.5 million in 2019 to 17 million in 2023.

In addition, the research forecasts Africa will record the highest growth in enterprise fixed broadband subscriptions between 2018 and 2022, with a CAGR of 7.27%, compared to 5.75% and 3.31% for Central and Southern Asia and Eastern Europe, respectively.

4G/5G FWA solution can addresses the connection of millions of households and enterprises currently unconnected, as well as the upgrade of 2.5 million households from low speed DSL to high speed broadband services. Case in point, according to a financial report issued by Telkom in South Africa, its WTTx new subscriber base increased by 340 thousand in the fiscal year 2018, beating 35 thousand new fibre users.

MTN Marathon Maternal Health Initiative Gets Shs250m Huawei Support

In the spirit of comradeship, Huawei Technologies extended an olive branch to MTN Uganda’s attempt to improve maternal health in Uganda by offering Shs250m to go towards this year’s MTN Kampala Marathon.

Huawei Uganda managing director Liujiawei handed over a dummy cheque to MTN Uganda chief marketing officer, Mr. Sen Somdev at Huawei Uganda Offices at the Cube Building, Kisementi in Kampala to symbolize their commitment to this good cause.

The 2019 edition of the MTN Kampala Marathon will be held on Sunday 24th November starting at the Kololo independence grounds with runners participating in either of 4 categories including; the full marathon (42Km), half marathon (21Km), 10Km race and 5Km wheelchair race/fun run.

“This year we shall run for maternal health once again, and as we all know, one out of every 49 women die of a maternal complication related to pregnancy in Uganda and it’s the highest in the world.

We at Huawei believe that this issue can be solved once and for all and make Uganda a better place for pregnant mothers. This then explains why we have come out to continue to sponsor this marathon with 250 million Uganda shillings,” Liujiawei told journalists. 

MTN’s Somdev said that with Huawei’s involvement in the MTN Kampala Marathon, they have positively impacted communities from the proceeds raised from the MTN Kampala Marathon.

“In the same way, our longstanding work relationship with Huawei has brought forth innovative digital solutions which have transformed the digital landscape for Uganda; and has certainly contributed to our vision of delivering a bold new digital world to our customers,” Somdev said.

1000 Ugandan Students Enroll For The 2019 Huawei ICT Competition

Over 1000 I.T students from Universities all over Uganda have registered to take part in the global Huawei ICT competition registration that happened in October.

Through presentations by Huawei made to students in Makerere, Kyambogo, Mbarara University of Science and Technology, Nkozi, Mbarara, Kabale, Lira, Gulu, Muni, UCU and MUBS accordingly, there has been a tremendous turn up of registration by the students to study and compete in the global competition

The registered students are expected to access learning material free of charge on the Huawei online learning platform in the various courses such as Network and Cloud track.

The network track consists of Router & Switch, Security and Wireless Lan while Cloud track consists of Artificial intelligence, Big Data, Cloud Computing and Storage.

These students are expected to study and do exams prepared for them at preliminary level, national level, regional level on the African continent and global level.

According to Ms. Wu Suqi, the coordinator of the Huawei ICT Academy, “the top students with the required pass mark after the various stages of the competition shall be awarded internship and job opportunities, professional Huawei certification recognition, gift devices and trips to South Africa and China for the regional and global competition respectively.”

“This is a platform for Ugandan I.T students to obtain professional acknowledgment from the ICT industry through the Huawei Certification”, she added.

With the theme “Connection, Glory, Future”, the Huawei 2019-2020 Global ICT competition aims to provide a platform for global ICT talents to compete and communicate, promote high-quality ICT talent development, and drive the growth of a robust and sustainable ICT talent ecosystem.

Mr. Josephat, the Head of ICT Department from Muni University commended Huawei’s efforts of skilling and nurturing ICT Talent. 

“I thank Huawei for this ICT competition and also the Seeds for the future program where as university we have participated for three years. These are great skilling and nurturing efforts aimed at making our students better and ready for employment,” he said.

Investing In Digital Skills To Unlock Uganda’s Digital Growth Potential

By Liu Jiawei

Last week, President Yoweri Museveni advised young women who had been trained in a variety of vocational trades to use the skills acquired to meet the needs of people, which in turn would make them wealthy and prosperous.

 This was at the graduation ceremony of 8,480 graduands who had benefitted from the ‘Presidential Initiative on Skilling the Girl Child. The lot, from the July- December 2018 intake, had successfully completed their training and obtained skills in bakery, hairdressing, knitting, tailoring and shoemaking.

 Apart from skills obtained by the girls, Information and Communication Technology ICT is another lifetime skill that is essential rather than optional.

 As skills gaps across all industries are poised to grow in the Fourth Industrial Revolution globally, there will also be strong demand for ICT-related skills.

 According to the World Economic Forum, at least 133 million new roles generated as a result of the new division of labour between humans, machines and algorithms may emerge globally by 2022.

By 2022, 85 per cent of companies across the world are very likely to have expanded their adoption of technologies such as data analytics, internet of things and cloud computing.

 In Uganda, the ICT skills gap is also a challenge, especially when the past years have witnessed a tremendous upsurge of ICTs in the country.

 The ICT sector has grown 19.7 per cent on average each year since 2013, adding 2.5 per cent annually to the country’s GDP.

In 2017, Uganda advanced five places in the International Telecommunication Union’s ICT Development Index, placing it 20th in Africa and second within East Africa.

However, report by National Information Technology Authority shows that within MDAs in Uganda, ICT personnel account for only 1.9 per cent of the total work force.

 The great array of hope in Uganda’s ICT Sector and the capacity of ICT to create jobs brings a need to invest in digital skills for a readily skilled ICT talent base for sectorial, industrial and national development.

 When we talk about bridging digital skill gap we are talking about three aspects.

 First, digital upskilling and reskilling will strengthen the necessary capacity for institutions and ICT professionals to be able to applying existing technologies in innovative ways and innovate around people’s needs.

 Second, encourage and enable youth to improve their ICT-related studies and enhance their digital skills. As new requirements emerging in the job market, they are able to shift from theoretical learning to practical application to be more employable, given that about 400,000 youths are released annually into the job market to compete for 9,000 available jobs in the country, according to a study by University of Makerere.

 Third, which is more easily ignored, equipping ordinary citizen with basic digital skills allowing them not only to consume the content and ideas produced by others but create their own products and services and develop their own ideas for life changing opportunities.

This is critical to unleash the potential within Ugandans, who, according to Global Entrepreneurship Monito, are the most entrepreneurial people in the world.

 Just as ICT and National Guidance Minister Frank Tumwebaze noted recently, “We should skill people to earn. Not everything we learn is geared towards earning but if you have an ICT skill, you are able to shape it, nurture it, incubate it, please work it out tailored to solve a problem and also earn from it.”

 To achieve the goals, we need strong public-social-private partnership in the preparation for a rapidly changing future, where digital skills gap will be widening fast if no actions were taken.

 On one hand, policies that support more available, accessible and affordable digital infrastructure to people especially those live in rural areas, are needed. This will allow for more equitable access to knowledge and harness technology to enable lifelong learning.

Decision makers also need to direct more resources to strengthen institutional capacity building including enhancing the digital competencies of teachers and make sure successful provision could be scaled up once it is available.

 On the other hand, civil society and private sector should be focused on bridging formal and non-formal digital skills provision and context-specific planning and provision by looking closely at the new requirements and the latest trends emerging in job market.

 At Huawei, we believe that PEOPLE is the most important asset, and that investing in PEOPLE is investment in the future. With this belief, Huawei Uganda has introduced upskilling and ICT talent development initiatives to bridge the gap between Academia and the ICT industry. These initiatives aim at building an ICT talent alliance, set an ICT talent standard, making them employable.

 Through the global ICT Competition that started in 2018 in Uganda, Huawei Uganda has had over 1,300 students accessing our learning platforms freely to access material on Networking, WLAN, and Cloud Computing.

We selected the top three who represented Uganda in the regional final in South Africa and took third place out of 12 countries.

This year we aim to reach over 6,000 university students countrywide. We have so far awarded 20 job opportunities to the top performers in the competition, and still considering more who are about to finish their university.

 The Huawei Seeds for the Future’ program is another initiative where we take 10 University students every year to China for hands-on training at our headquarters in Beijing and Shenzhen. Since 2016 we have so far taken 40 students of which 22 are already employed at Huawei and other organization and the remaining still studying in their various universities.

 The target is to train over 1000 students in Uganda by end of 2020 through our ICT academies and certification programmes currently established in Makerere, Kyambogo, Kabale and Soroti universities, among others.

 We also work closely with different ministries in supporting young innovators in the country and empower vulnerable groups.

I heard an inspiring story that a girl who is beneficiary of one of the initiatives established a technology start-up to build a verified voucher system for simplifying the distribution of International and National aid. Her skill acquisition and application could be properly described as “ICT for Development”, which is the name of the initiative.


ICTs are critical to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, and digital skill are critical to ICTs adoption and application. Tech is for good, with the right skill, we could pass it on.

Huawei Uganda is willing and ready to invest with all its partners in digital skills in order to unlock Uganda’s digital growth potential for more inclusive development with no one left behind.

Liu Jiawei is the Managing Director Huawei Uganda

Huawei Drops Lawsuit Against US Government

Huawei's US subsidiary, Huawei Technologies USA Inc. (HT USA), dropped a lawsuit on Sept. 9 against the US Commerce Department and several other US government agencies that it has filed back in June.

The case was originally filed in response to telecommunications equipment that was seized without justification by US officials in September 2017.

After a prolonged and unexplained seizure, Huawei has decided to drop the case after the US government returned the equipment, which Huawei views as a tacit admission that the seizure itself was unlawful and arbitrary.

This case was cited among a series of concerns the company recently enumerated with regard to inappropriate and unjustified actions against Huawei by the US government.

 The equipment, which includes computer servers, Ethernet switches, and other telecommunications gear made by Huawei in China, should have been shipped back to China after commercial testing and certification at a laboratory in California in September 2017.

The US Commerce Department, citing unidentified export violation concerns, seized the equipment while it was in transit.

In the two years since, and despite multiple requests from Huawei, the US government failed to make a decision on whether an export license was required for the equipment to be shipped back to China, and continued to hold it.

 Huawei had no alternative but to file a lawsuit on June 21 at the US District Court for the District of Columbia, challenging the US government's prolonged and unexplained failure to determine whether the equipment could be shipped to China without an export license.

These actions by the US Government violated the Constitution and the Administrative Procedures Act, among others.

 In August, the US government informed HT USA in writing that, following a belated investigation, it had determined that no export license was required for shipment to China, and Huawei had complied with the Export Administration Regulations when attempting to ship the equipment back. The US government shipped the equipment back to HT USA at the government’s expense.

 Dr. Song Liuping, Huawei's chief legal officer, said Huawei has landed a de facto victory despite its voluntary dismissal of the lawsuit, but is still disappointed by the fact that the US government has failed to provide any explanation for unlawfully withholding Huawei equipment for so long.

 In a notice of voluntary dismissal filed with the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, HT USA said it requested in writing the US Commerce Department to explain fully why it detained the equipment in 2017, why it decided to release it now, and why it took almost two years to recognize that the equipment's detention was not justified. Thus far the government has refused to explain.

 "Arbitrary and unlawful government actions like this – detaining property without cause or explanation – should serve as a cautionary tale for all companies doing normal business in the United States, and should be subject to legal constraints," said Dr. Song.

 In a media statement on September 3, Huawei listed how the US government has been using every tool at its disposal – including both judicial and administrative powers – to disrupt the normal business operations of the company.

This includes obstructing normal business activities and technical communications through intimidation, denying visas, and detaining shipments. Dr. Song noted that Huawei will continue to vigorously defend its legitimate rights and interests with legal means.

Second Edition Of The Huawei Global ICT Competition Kicks Off In Uganda

Huawei global ICT competition has kicked off in Uganda with a road show in Makerere University.

 With the theme “Connection, Glory, Future”, the Huawei 2019-2020 Global ICT competition aims to provide a platform for global ICT talents to showcase their ability, compete and communicate, encouraging ICT-related study and drive the growth of a robust ICT talent ecosystem.

Over 6000 students from the various Universities all over Uganda are expected to participate in the contest with various subjects including network, Cloud Computing, artificial intelligence and big data.

Mr. Liujiawei, the Managing Director of Huawei Uganda noted that ICT skills gap has increasingly become a bottleneck for embracing opportunities in the digital era, as across all industries are poised to grow with rapid advances in emerging technologies, changing the very nature of the jobs.

He emphasized that it is important to foster an open and sustainable ICT talents ecosystem that involves different stakeholders to equip youths with employable skills and increase competencies relevant in the labor market.

 “We need a comprehensive approach of skills development for employment, enhanced productivity and growth. Training contents must be aligned with skills requirements in the job market.

That is why we re-dedicate ourselves to working even more closely with universities across the country to better equip students with the next generation of technologies and create the platform for the Ugandan students to demonstrate they are capable of maturing into world-class experts.” Liu said.

 Skills gaps across all industries are poised to grow in the Fourth Industrial Revolution globally. There will also be strong demand for ICT-related skills.

According to the World Economic Forum, at least 133 million new roles generated as a result of the new division of labour between humans, machines and algorithms may emerge globally by 2022. In Uganda, the ICT skills gap is also a challenge.

Report by National Information Technology Authority shows that within MDAs, ICT personnel account for only 1.9% of the total work force.

To bridge the ICT skills gap and fostering ICT talent pool needed for national social economic development, Huawei Uganda has been working with government, industrial and academic partners in upskilling engineers, providing certification courses, sponsoring aboard studies and supporting government’s initiatives in promoting innovation and ICT learning.

Huawei Uganda has so far signed up six universities across Uganda in launch establishment of academies, where students can access to industrially-recognized certification courses.

 This is the second executive year for the global leading ICT solutions provider to bring the global event to Uganda. First round of registration will take place from 26th August to 30th October at Makerere, Kyambogo, Muni, MUST, Lira, Gulu, Busitema and many other private Universities respectively.

The registered students through are expected to access learning material and certification portfolio provided by Huawei free of charge. Winners of the contests in Uganda will have opportunity to participate in the regional finals in South Africa and global finals at Huawei’s headquarters in Shenzhen, China.

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