Technology and telecom play a major role in accelerating towards a digital economy powered by 5G, IoT and cloud positively impacting every aspect of the society by building an advanced infrastructure fostering an innovative ecosystem and encouraging collaboration, highlighted Hatem Bamatraf, Chief Technology Officer, Etisalat International.
Bamatraf participated in a panel discussion organized by SAMENA Telecom Council titled ‘Accelerating a Sustainable Digital Economy’. His session focused on achieving consensus on modelling the digital economy for the next decade. The other key panellists in the discussion included other senior leaders from GSMA, World Economic Forum, Saudi Arabia and Africa.
“In the current pandemic, all companies have accelerated their efforts to digital transformation by identifying gaps that need to be addressed touching all aspects of the business, network and technology infrastructure. As an industry, policymakers and regulators need to support this transition to the digital economy by implementing favourable ICT policies, fast-tracking infrastructure development and fostering digital inclusion. This will improve the socio-economics of the region by sustainably closing the digital divide, and Etisalat was among the first telcos to adopt digital transformation embodied in our strategy ‘driving the digital future to enable societies,” said Bamatraf.
The discussion also highlighted the importance of building the necessary ICT infrastructure, which requires updating existing systems and making policies, such as ‘Cloud First’, defining steps to achieve strategic coordination of multiple stakeholders, making digital economy measurable, integrating the region and create economies of scale for infrastructure investments.