Huawei Myanmar calls for govt to facilitate change

DESPITE being caught in the trade war between China and the United States, Chinese giant Huawei Technologies Co remains confident of continued healthy growth in Myanmar thanks to the rising demand from locals, Liman Zhang, chief executive of Huawei Myanmar, said.

In an interview with The Nation, Zhang said the firm stands ready to enjoy stronger growth in Myanmar over the next few years.

“Though we have been facing challenges since last year, our business performance remains strong here,” he said.

“Our carrier business remained stable, and our consumer business performed superbly. In 2018, our consumer business grew by 36 per cent over the previous year, with more than 1 million smart devices sold in Myanmar.”

The executive said enterprise and cloud businesses also achieved many breakthroughs. KBZPay, which has become the nation’s leading mobile financial service within a short period of time, is a success stories involving Huawei’s partnership with Myanmar companies, Zhang added.

“Myanmar is very important to Huawei, and we are also very important to this country,” he claimed, citing the example of the firm’s involvement in Myanmar’s telecom sector reforms and rapidly increasing smartphone usage.

“It is an emerging market. Tech and innovations drive economic development as a great engine here,” he said.

Zhang considers Myanmar a unique market, with a surging demand for ICT technologies and innovative business models. He pledged to bring more advanced technologies and better services to the country.

According to Zhang, the market itself, along with customer requirements, are the main driving forces behind Huawei’s growth in the country. Every industry has a strong demand for digital transformation and convenience, he said.

“With regards to Huawei’s business, the main growth points will come from new business domains such as consumer business, enterprise and cloud.”

This year, the firm will continue to invest in 5G, broadband, cloud and artificial intelligence (AI). It will bring more advanced ICT solutions to Myanmar. Those solutions would maximise and synchronise access by its customers and partners from all industries to the world’s emerging technologies, and result in greater business success.

In the first half of 2019, the Huawei Cloud & AI Contest will be held to empower college students and AI developers. It has also planned for a digital finance forum, aiming to push forward the digital transformation of Myanmar’s financial sector.

“We will stand with telecom operators to further improve 4G network coverage and quality, provide rich, cost-efficient smart devices, and fast telecom services to people and homes in Myanmar. We will help operators with early preparations in technologies and business, and government in spectrum and policies to usher in the era of 5G,” he said.

Starting from this year, sales of Huawei device models in Myanmar will be synchronised with the global market so that the nation’s people could enjoy a timely, rich smart experience like other markets.

Last year, Huawei applied WTTx (Wireless To The x) technology so that 200,000 more families, located where fibre optics were very difficult to deploy, could enjoy broadband service. It introduced the cost-efficient RuralStar solution, which uses LTE transmission to replace costly satellite transmission, and to enhance rural area coverage. The firm also came up with the CloudAir technology to address the high costs and low utilisation rate of the LTE spectrum, a move that ensured 40 per cent extra bandwidth and improved user experience. “We leverage ICT to push forward digital transformation of all industries for Myanmar’s rapid economic performance, and work with partners to build a sound digital ecosystem here,” Zhang said. Launched last year, Huawei Cloud provides AI-enabled technologies to recognise hand-written Myanmar fonts with excellent accuracy, greatly facilitating information input and check. The firm’s public safety solutions, with reinforced AI and big data analysis, helped Yangon and other major cities to improve policy efficiency, which ensured people’s safety and has laid a solid foundation for the evolution into smart cities. “We have signed a new MoU [memorandum of understanding] on ICT talent development with related authorities. In the next three years, we will continue with our efforts in talent development,” he said. 5G in focus Zhang seems confident of bringing 5G to Myanmar in the next few years. “We do not want Myanmar a step behind others,” he said. He urged the government to plan the spectrum used by 5G, the pace and roadmap of spectrum distribution, and to auction spectrum to operators at reasonable prices.

Source: The Nation

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