Huawei MENA Industrial Digital Transformation Summit 2021 highlights the role of digitalization for the future development of the region’s industries and society

The summit explored how digital technology can better integrate with business scenarios and industry know-how to address critical business challenges

By Eman Hamed

Huawei, a leading global provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices, recently hosted public and private sector leaders from across the Middle East and North Africa region during the Huawei MENA Industrial Digital Transformation Summit 2021 held in Dubai, UAE, under the theme of “Dive into Digital”.

The summit explored how digital technology can better integrate with business scenarios and industry know-how to address critical business challenges, and how stakeholders can work together more effectively to develop an open industry ecosystem for shared success. 

In the MENA region specifically, Huawei believes that there are enormous opportunities to help support digital transformation, and build the digital economy of the future.

The summit highlighted that the Middle East region is a pioneer in digital transformation, and that digitalization in Africa is growing at a rapid pace with specific objectives to close the digital infrastructure and connectivity gap. 

Steven Yi, Supervisory Board Member & President for Middle East and Africa Area, Huawei, gave a welcome speech at the summit and noted: “At Huawei, we believe deeply in the power of innovative solutions and strong cooperation with our customers and partners. We are confident that we can innovate to support the businesses of tomorrow, and assist nations in achieving their national development visions.”

Indeed, the summit comes at an extraordinary period that has seen the exponential growth in digital transformation across all industries. More than 170 countries around the world have put digitization into their national development strategies and going digital is no longer viewed as an option, but has become a necessity. 

Commenting on the acceleration of digital transformation in the MENA region, Jyoti Lalchandani, Group Vice President & Regional MD, Middle East, Turkey & Africa, IDC, noted that over 63% of CIOs in MENA have brought forward their digital roadmaps by 1 year or more, and organizations will need to spend more time delivering upon strategic mandates, and converged technology, data, and business ecosystems will be required to run the “digital enterprise” of the future. 

Diving into the digital world is an iterative process. As digital transformation has become an industry consensus, the focus has been shifted from whether or not to go digital to how to go digital. To help enterprise customers innovate models, improve quality and efficiency, enhance experience, and strengthen resilience, Huawei highlighted primary areas of focus for diving into digital.

David Shi, President, Enterprise Business Group, Huawei Middle East, discussed how enterprises and governments can truly ‘Dive into Digital’ in practice, and make digital transformation a reality. He said: “Digital transformation requires forward-looking willingness and determination, strategic planning, and the ability to facilitate the implementation of digital transformation in three areas: business transformation, digital capabilities and transformation partner alliances.” 

Ahmad Yahya, Group CIO and COO, American Hospital Dubai, was also one of the key speakers at the summit, where he discussed how patient experience can be enhanced with healthcare digital transformation. Speaking at the summit, Yahya said, “The pandemic has resulted in an acceleration in digital transformation in all industries with healthcare being at the forefront. Patients demand choice and control over their care and Providers must ensure the patient experience is a focus by adopting these digital technologies. We have embarked on an ambitious digital transformation journey together with an ecosystem of technology partners like Huawei.”

In addition to industry analysts, customers and partners, several Huawei key executives from the global and regional leadership team spoke at the keynote sessions during the summit. Breakout sessions and Roundtables during the summit examined topics like government digital transformation, cloud for enterprises, cybersecurity best practices for a secure digital world, and technology solutions to accelerate digital transformation in the education sector. 

Leveraging advanced ICT capabilities and years of industry experience, Huawei has long worked with partners and customers worldwide at various stages of digital evolution to fully support their digital transformation. As always, Huawei will help customers grow their unique value, making the strong stronger.

Throughout the week of Oct 17 to 21, Huawei demonstrated the growing value of digitalization to national economies during GITEX Global 2021. The Huawei MENA Industrial Digital Transformation Summit was one of a comprehensive series of summits & exhibitions organized by Huawei during this period.


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