DHAKA, May 20 (Xinhua) -- China's telecommunication giant Huawei has announced its support for South Asian countries including Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal to tap 100,000 fresh digital talents over the next five years.
A spokesperson from Huawei made the announcement at the "Digital Talent Regional Summit" held online Thursday.
Themed "Cultivating a Talent Ecosystem for Inclusive Digital Prosperity," the summit brought together officials and scholars from the three countries, and experts and representatives from UNESCO and the ICT industry, to explore collaborative initiatives for closing the digital skill gaps and facilitating the digital transformation in the post-pandemic economic recovery.
Zunaid Ahmed Palak, Bangladeshi state minister for posts, telecommunications and information technology, Satya Prasad Majumder, vice-chancellor of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), and Beatrice Kaldun, head of office and UNESCO representative to Bangladesh, among others, were present and shared their insights.
"We believe the talent ecosystem is the cornerstone of the economic recovery and a long-lasting digital future. However, the lack of digital skills is one of the biggest challenges facing many countries," Jay Chen, vice president of Huawei Asia Pacific, said at the summit.
"In the next five years, Huawei expects to develop more than 100,000 ICT talent and build a vibrant digital talent ecosystem in this dynamic region, especially Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal," he said.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, state minister Palak said Bangladesh is marching forward by fulfilling all the requirements of a developing nation, which have been possible for the efficient use of information and communication technology in all fields.
"Now is the right time to create digital talent, along with the priority on digitalization," he said.
He said Huawei has been working as a partner in various government initiatives to accelerate the country's digitalization process and upskill the youth.
"With their support, our youth have the opportunity to learn about modern technology from industry experts. I strongly believe such partnerships will contribute to the country's economic growth and prepare our youth to face the Fourth Industrial Revolution," Palak said.
In his speech, BUET Vice-Chancellor Satya Prasad Majumder said "this pandemic has reminded us of the need for continuous innovation in order to remain ahead of the curve by using technology."
"This can be achieved only if we continue to nurture talent in the ICT sector. For that, ICT leaders such as Huawei and institutes of academic excellence like BUET need to continue working together like we have been doing so far, with the support of the government," said the vice-chancellor.
Kaldun, the UNESCO representative to Bangladesh, said "in order to cultivate a talent ecosystem for inclusive digital prosperity, we have to promote digital inclusion, mainstream digital skill developments, and foster digital-pedagogical transformation to ensure the quality of learning."
She said Huawei is committed to this action and would like to build on its partnership with UNESCO, which started with the "TECH4ALL" initiative in Africa, with the aim for global expansion.
"It is a long-term, digital inclusion initiative that targets empowering the world's maximum population with essential digital skills," Kaldun said
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Huawei has cooperated with partners, including UNESCO, to provide digital solutions and online learning resources to students and professionals.
Huawei said it plans to extend the digital talents cultivation initiatives and provide an end-to-end Huawei Talent Platform, which will help learners improve their capabilities and assists them with career development by offering a one-stop service, covering online course, examination, certification, and job seeking.