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Huawei stresses its commitment to inclusive and sustainable digital transformation at the Africa CEO Forum 2023

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On 5 and 6 June 2023, Côte d’Ivoire’s capital hosted this year’s Africa CEO Forum at the Sofitel Abidjan Hôtel Ivoire. Now a major must-attend event, the Africa CEO Forum has been bringing together the key players working to shape a competitive, resilient and sovereign Africa since 2012. Huawei’s participation is a clear reflection of the company’s commitment to encouraging public-private dialogue in Africa and actively contributing to the continent’s socio-economic development.

This year, the high-level international summit brought together 2,000 participants, comprising business leaders, investors, representatives of financial institutions and political decision-makers. The latter particularly recognized the importance of public-private dialogue in Africa’s rise to an emerging economy. Under the theme ‘From 300 to 3000: how to accelerate the emergence of the next generation of African champions’, delegates were able to participate in conferences, debates, workshops and high-level meetings focusing on the essential role of the private sector in driving economic activity in sectors of strategic importance to the continent and its people.

Huawei has been operating in Africa for over 20 years and, as a leading player in the telecoms infrastructure sector, is deeply committed to supporting its customers and partners in their digital transformation, as this is one of the main pillars of growth for the continent as a whole. Demonstrating the company’s commitment to sustainable and inclusive digital development, a delegation of high-level Huawei representatives, comprising Tonny BAO, Vice President, Huawei; Philippe WANG, Executive Vice President, Huawei Northern Africa; and Vincent SUN, President of Orange Key Account, Huawei, took part in the 9th Africa CEO Forum.  Over the course of the two days, they shared their views and expertise on the opportunities and challenges presented by the emergence of an African digital economy.

This year’s program also included a panel discussion hosted by Huawei on Monday 5 June on the theme of ‘Unleash Digital for a sustainable and inclusive Africa’. Tonny BAO, Vice President, Huawei, gave the opening speech, during which he emphasized the importance of the vision set out in the African Union’s Agenda 2063 for transforming the continent’s economy, saying “The African Union’s Agenda 2063 points out that building a fully digital and inclusive Africa has become a common development objective for African countries. Africa’s digital transformation will enable the continent to lead the way towards rapid and sustainable growth that will benefit countries’ economic and social fabric”.

Amadou COULIBALY, Minister for Communication and the Digital Economy and Spokesman for the Government of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire, took part in the panel discussion, explaining that “Coal was the energy that accelerated the industrial revolution in Europe in the last century, and today digital is the energy that is propelling Africa towards its industrial revolution”.

Lacina KONÉ, CEO, Smart Africa, stressed the need to encourage “local financing, but also the confidence of local authorities” in the role that start-ups can play in accelerating the economy of countries, while Valérie LEVKOV, EDF Senior Vice-President Africa, Middle East & East Mediterranean, pointed out that “digital (…) can contribute up to 20% of the world’s carbon reduction through digital optimization and operational efficiency”. Other high-level participants included Adnane BEN HALIMA, Vice President in charge of Public Relations, Huawei Northern Africa, Brelotte BA, Deputy CEO and Chief Operating Officer, Orange Middle East & Africa and Jeremy AWORI, Group CEO, Ecobank.

The presence of these prominent personalities on the panel confirms the mobilization of a strong ecosystem to successfully bring about this digital revolution, especially in light of the imperatives imposed by climate change. The message is clear: it is crucial to seize the opportunities offered by new technologies, while adjusting them to today’s challenges, especially the objectives of carbon neutrality and reducing our ecological footprint.

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