Huawei to Invest $150m in Africa’s Digital Talent Development

Emma Okonji

Huawei said it plans to invest $150 million in developing digital talent over the next five years, which will be beneficial to some three million young people in Africa.

In a statement, the technology company quoted its president, Liang Hua, as saying: “Today we are announcing Huawei’s seeds for the Future 2.0 program. As part of our commitment to continuously develop talent, we will invest $150 million in the program over the next five years and help college students and youth improve their digital skills.” An additional three million people are expected to benefit from the programme.”

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

Seeds of the Future is a program that aims to help develop young talents around the world, providing them with training from global ICT experts on the latest technologies to help them develop the skills and mindsets needed to compete in the workplace of the future, the statement further said.

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

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Issa Bantami said: “Nigeria is positioned to be the continent’s leader in digitization. Burkina Faso already has a Ministry of Digital Economy but we have many advantages” and the advantages, he said, include the country’s population and location, and the contribution of ICT In GDP, the level of ICT knowledge among Nigerians.

He added that the government will henceforth be a forerunner in ICT through the effective application of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, robotics and virtual reality. He noted that within a few years, Nigerians may not need to travel to India or other foreign countries for medical treatment, as surgeries can be performed on patients anywhere in the world using 5G technology.

Pantami urged the 10 Nigerian students selected from different institutions for the Huawei Internship Program to see themselves as future entrepreneurs in order to make the most of this opportunity. “ICT has the potential to employ millions of Nigerians and lift them out of poverty,” Bantami said, while praising Huawei for its investment in Nigerian youth as part of its corporate social responsibility commitments.

Managing Director of Huawei Technologies Nigeria Limited, Mr. Trevor Liu, said Nigeria’s population remains the largest in Africa, which, according to him, is an advantage in the fast track of the country’s digital transformation.

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

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