One of the most culturally and economically vibrant regions in the world, the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region takes on a crucial role in driving global economic growth.
APAC stands as the most dynamic region on earth, home to more than half of the global population. It now plays an equally pivotal role in digital innovation—a key factor in reinvigorating the global digital economy in a post-pandemic world.
The question that now remains is how?
Leading global information and communications technology (ICT) company Huawei, with the ASEAN foundation, recently gathered over 1,500 government officials, experts, researchers, partners, and analysts from more than 10 countries in the Asia-Pacific region to explore the future of digital innovation and the digital economy.
The two-day Huawei APAC Digital Innovation Congress held in Singapore from May 19 and 20 spearheaded topics in the ongoing advancements in ICT, speeding up digital transformation across industries, as well as green and low-carbon development in the region.
“The Asia-Pacific region is one of the most culturally and economically vibrant regions in the world,” said Ken Hu, Huawei’s Rotating Chairman, during his opening speech. “It has long played an important role in global economic growth, and now plays an equally important role in digital innovation,” he continued, citing the fact that many APAC countries have elevated digital transformation to a strategic policy level and are actively going green.
Huawei has paved the way for digital development in APAC, noting its deep roots in the region having served their customers here for over 30 years. Huawei’s Rotating Chairman also emphasized that the company will continue on investing heavily in innovation to help regional partners meet strategic development goals.
“In 2022, we will increase our support for a Green and Digital APAC by promoting digital infrastructure, low-carbon development, and digital inclusion,” he added in a video message delivered to a packed Marina Bay Sands Grand Ballroom.
For its part, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Foundation, headed by Executive Director Yang Mee Eng said that only a strong digital talent team can achieve an inclusive and resilient digital Asia-Pacific region.
“The Huawei APAC Digital Innovation Congress 2022 marks another critical milestone in the ASEAN Foundation-Huawei partnership to continue creating a talent development-focused learning ecosystem that will help address the digital skills shortage in the region,” she added.
According to the ASEAN Development Outlook report and Southeast Asia Digital Economy Report, by 2030, ASEAN will become the 4th largest economy in the world. The region’s internet economy market is expected to reach $1 trillion.
“As a global company rooted in local market, Huawei actively supports the ICT and digital transformation policies in different countries. We aim to become a key contributor to the digital economy in Asia-Pacific,” said Simon Lin, President of Huawei’s Asia Pacific Region.
Huawei aims to help APAC build a leading and green infrastructure, including 5G, broadband, and data centers with Lin highlighting the company’s mission “In Asia-Pacific, for Asia-Pacific”, under which Huawei is committed to becoming a key contributor to the digital economy in the Asia-Pacific, and working with its customers and partners to build a better green digital life.
In the Asia-Pacific, Huawei has established partnerships with nearly 10,000 enterprise and cloud partners and plans to invest US$100 million in the Spark startup ecosystem, training 170,000 locals on digital skills, and planning to provide digital training to another 500,000 within five years as part of its efforts to develop a talent ecosystem that can drive the digital economy forward.
The event included four industry sessions focused on new innovations in digital infrastructure: intelligent campuses, full-stack data centers, digital power, and cloud.
At the Intelligent Campus session, Huawei released solutions for multiple campus scenarios, including simplified campus networks and FTTO/FTTM scenarios, and shared the latest achievements and best practices of its customers and partners. At the Cloud session, Huawei unveiled new products and solutions like GaussDB – a new cloud storage database – and DevCloud—a one-stop DevOps shop for more efficient software development.
Huawei nurtures roots in a digital Philippines
Meanwhile, Huawei is currently helping the development of the ICT industry in the Philippines through corporate social responsibility (CSR) projects.
As an ICT leader, Huawei is committed to promoting ICT industry development in the Philippines, and conducted several CSR programs, such as School in A Bag, Huawei Philippines Scholarship, etc. As the company’s flagship CSR program, Seeds in the Future has been in the Philippines for 7 years, which benefited more than 200 students. Huawei Philippines also partners with more than 60 Philippine universities in ICT Academy, covered more than 13,000 students.
As a prominent provider of information and communications technology (ICT), Huawei took part in the #NoLearnersLeftBehind campaign, which aims to assist teachers and students in adapting to the new digital education. PLDT Inc.’s social outreach arm, also known as the PLDT-Smart Foundation, distributes School in a Bag Packages. Each bag contains water-resistant backpacks with laptops for teachers and Tablets for students. It provides teachers and students in remote areas with access to technology and connectivity.
Huawei also believes that everyone deserves a good education, which is why the Tech4All initiative provides scholarships. Huawei Scholarship, like other scholarships, seeks to help deserving students with financial aid. Started from 2021, this program has 19 scholars from different colleges and universities.
Huawei Philippines is also working with the local academe to develop, expand, and strengthen the local ICT talent ecosystem. Huawei ICT Academy is a corporate social responsibility project that focuses on the opportunities and problems that the ICT industry presents. It provides high-quality resources and certification courses in AI, big data, cloud computing, storage, 5G, security, and other fields to both professors and students. In 2018, Huawei ICT Academy opened its doors in the Philippines, with the University of Southeastern Philippines (USeP) as one of its founding partners.
The Seeds for the Future Program is the company’s longest-running Corporate Social Responsibility activity. The program began in Thailand in 2008 with the goal of nurturing indigenous ICT expertise while also bridging the gap between countries and cultures. Huawei provided free communications equipment training and hands-on training to the participants, who were university students majoring in telecommunications.
The Seeds for the Future program was held online for the first time in 2020, in order to maintain program continuity during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The online program allows for live learning and cross-border collaboration. It is an alternative for delivering the program’s benefits virtually across borders in the event of a global pandemic. A large number of worthy students from the Philippines participated in Huawei Seeds for the Future. The chosen talents received an eight-day online course as the pandemic proceeds.
In his speech during the event, Huawei Rotating Chairman Ken hu stressed the important role of the company in keeping rainforests safe, noting that “in the Philippines, people are using AI and connected devices to help protect the rainforest.”
The monitoring system comprising mobile devices and AI powered by Huawei Cloud was deployed in five protected areas across Palawan: Cadlao Island, Maranlao and Pasadena in El Nido, and New Guinlo and Pancol in Taytay, to prevent illegal logging and animal poaching
Powered by solar panels, this Rainforest Guardian system comprises old cell phones that monitor and record sounds of human activity, like chainsaws and vehicles, and capture data on animal behavior patterns.