Partnerships will ensure Kuwait’s digital supremacy – ARAB TIMES

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Khalid Al Begain President of Kuwait College of Science and Technology

The vision of the government of Kuwait is to transform the nation into a regional and international financial and commercial center according to the principles of Kuwait Vision 2035. The backbone of this transformational vision is ICT, which is essential in driving economic diversification. , job creation and competitiveness. Kuwait ranks high in global ICT development indicators, boasting near-universal internet penetration, growing 5G coverage and expanding digital services. The state is moving towards advanced “smart government” and “smart city” concepts, providing citizens and organizations with easier online transactions and ubiquitous access and connectivity.

IDC predicts that digital transformation investments in the MENA region will double over the period 2020-2025, reaching $58 billion by 2025. Meanwhile, experts estimate that ICT spending in Kuwait will grow at an annual rate by 10.2%, to reach $10.1 billion by 2024. Global Data suggests that economic growth will be driven by advanced technologies such as AI, big data, cloud computing and the Internet of objects (IoT).

While technology may well be the keystone of Kuwait’s Vision 2035, it is equally important to ensure that there is a rich pool of talent, able to take full advantage of the highly advanced technological infrastructure of the countries and to implement the objectives of the Vision. Universities in Kuwait continue to produce talented ICT practitioners, but it is important to note that demand exceeds supply locally and internationally. We need to invest in talent development to ensure that local organizations have access to sufficiently qualified staff to pursue their digital transformation goals. The backbone, software and hardware can all be in place, however, advanced digital training and skills development is needed to meet the growing needs of an evolving digital economy.

Academia must partner with government and the private sector in tripartite agreements that not only consider current technology and talent needs, but fully embrace future needs. And to support this mission, the Kuwait College of Science and Technology (KCST) aims to prepare graduates capable of leading society, ideally through training with an array of industry partnerships in key technology areas such as 5G and systems. and advanced communication networks, cybersecurity, the artificial. Intelligence and robotics. With this in mind, KCST hosts the first Huawei 5G Lab and 5G Star simulation training system in Kuwait, under the Huawei ICT Academy concept. This collaboration will boost the development of ICT talent across the country and facilitate new digital business models, supporting economic transformation in line with the local vision. The 5G Lab offers students an insight into the latest developments in technology. Participants will also benefit from industry connections and knowledge sharing in real-world ICT scenarios.

The 5G Star platform, on the other hand, offers an industry-standard simulation training program based on Huawei 5G base stations. Students will learn real-world skills in an immersive environment, using virtual reality to deliver complex technological learning in a classroom setting.

The Huawei ICT Academy is a global school-business partnership program run by Huawei to encourage college and university students to pursue careers in ICT. Combined with professional certifications, the ICT Academy provides resources and skills to local talent to contribute to the advancement of the industry and the wider digital society. This partnership with Huawei exposes students to some of the most innovative technologies in 5G, with a view to their digital uptake. economy.

Further helping to generate regional interest and knowledge of the ICT industry, Huawei also runs various talent development programs and competitions such as Huawei Middle East ICT Competition, Huawei Seeds for the Future (SFTF) Competition , the Developer Academy, the Cloud Academy, and Women in Science and Technology. These programs allow students to understand the latest technology trends, experience the technology ecosystem in Kuwait, and learn from industry experts.

Huawei provides quality courses and support services to Kuwaiti universities that help train teachers, establish and optimize ICT majors, improve the curriculum, and build labs – all of which contribute to the development of innovative technical talent. and focused on applications in Kuwait.

While our partnerships with tech leaders such as Huawei mean our students are very well equipped to thrive in the emerging digital economy and position Kuwait well for future talent, we need to do more.

We must push for more young people to pursue careers in ICT and ensure that more companies like Huawei are involved in national training initiatives. KCST proudly plays a pivotal role in Kuwait’s digital revolution, providing training, skills and talent. But it is only through carefully nurtured, long-term industry partnerships that we can ensure that we are all properly prepared for the bright new digital future.

By Professor Khalid Al Begain President of Kuwait College of Science and Technology