Telecommunications leaders and experts from Pakistan and across the world recently virtually attended the SAMENA Telecommunication Council Leaders’ Summit to review plans for unleashing the potential of 5G networks to boost economies and societies in a post-COVID-19 environment. The Summit was hosted by Huawei for the seventh consecutive year.
Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui, Federal Secretary of IT and Telecommunication; Maj. Gen. Amir Azeem Bajwa, Chairman of the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority; Tania Aidrus, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister for Digital Pakistan, Mark Meng, CEO of Huawei Pakistan were all in attendance for this year’s SAMENA Telecommunications Council Leaders’ Summit.
Mark Meng, CEO of Huawei Pakistan committed that “Huawei will support the government’s Digital Pakistan initiative to move toward a diversified, knowledge-based economy with the latest technologies like 5G, AI, and Internet Of Things and unlock new avenues of growth and innovation.”
The theme of the Summit was “5G+X: Harnessing 5G Across Industries for Investment Revival,” which shed light on how technology and ICT infrastructure play an increasingly important role in our societies, and therefore our economies. The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the need to strengthen digital infrastructure to better prepare societies for future crises and to make systems more resilient and sustainable, guaranteeing a better and more effective outcome.
Mr. Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui, Federal Secretary of IT and Telecommunication elaborated on this by saying, “Crisis presents both danger and opportunity. Let’s focus on all the opportunities in the current pandemic and develop the ICT sector as the true key technology enabler for digital harmony, connectivity and cooperation among all sectors of society.”
Mr. Bocar A. BA , CEO of SAMENA Telecommunications Council also shared his opinions and stated that we are “increasingly witnessing progressiveness across Pakistan’s ICT policy and regulatory landscape” and he deemed it “necessary for 5G preparations to be accelerated in the country” in the hopes of achieving “digital inclusion” at all levels of society.
The Summit also explored how ICT stakeholders can work together with industry verticals to turn their vision into reality at the local and regional level. Participants reviewed 5G ecosystem cooperation in the Middle East and Pakistan, and how 5G paired with complementary technologies such as cloud, AI and can create new industry applications. Better integration of AI into the public health response was also spotlighted.
Maj. Gen. Amir Azeem Bajwa, Chairman of Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, said that “I believe that readiness of our telecom infrastructure will be sufficient to support 5G networks and services across the country.”