Huawei set to invest US$150m in Africa for digital talent development over five years

AFRICA Huawei, a Chinese multinational technology company, has announced plans to invest US$150 million in digital talent development over the next five years, which will be beneficial to about three million youths in Africa.

“Today we are announcing Huawei’s Seeds for the Future Program 2.0. As part of our commitment to continuously develop talent, we will invest US$150 million in the program over the next five years and help college students and young people improve their digital skills. The program is expected to benefit another three million people,” Chairman, Liang Hua, to have said in a statement.

In 2008, Huawei began to expand its talent development programs, through scholarships, technology competitions, and digital skills training, and has invested more than US$150 million in these programs. Huawei has tremendously benefited more than 1.54 million people from over 150 countries.

Seeds for the Future is a program that aims to help cultivate young talent around the world, providing them with training from global ICT experts on the latest technology to help them develop the skills and mindsets needed to be competitive in the workplaces of the future, the statement further said.

Huawei introduced the program to Africa in 2014. Over the past years, the program has benefited nearly 2,000 students in more than 25 African countries. The program and Huawei’s efforts in ICT talent development has been recognised by many African governments.

Nigeria is positioning to be the continent’s leader in digitalisation. Burkina Faso already has a ministry of digital economy, but we have so many advantages,” the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, said.

The advantages, according to him, include the country’s population and location, the contribution of the ICT to Gross Domestic Product, and the level of the ICT literacy among Nigerians.

He added that the government would henceforth be proactive in the ICT through effective application of emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, Robotics, and Virtual Reality.

He noted that in a few years, Nigerians might no longer need to travel to India or other foreign countries for medical treatment, as surgeries could be performed on patients anywhere in the world by means of 5G technology.

Pantami urged the 10 Nigerian students selected from different institutions for the Huawei internship programme to see themselves as future entrepreneurs in order to make the best of the opportunity.

The Managing Director of Huawei Technologies Nigeria Limited, Mr. Trevor Liu, said Nigeria population remained the largest in Africa, which according to him, would be an advantage to fast-track digital transformation in the country.

“The youths are the continent’s greatest resource, which will power the economy in the future. Huawei will continue to partner with the Nigerian governments, education institutes and industry to equip the future leaders with the latest knowledge at the highest global levels and provide them opportunities to apply the knowledge in order to achieve a better future for the continent,” Liu said.

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