LIVE FROM GSMA MOBILE 360 SERIES – MENA, DUBAI: Operators need to step up as governments ramp the pressure for countries across the MENA region to lead on digital transformation, Etisalat’s chief corporate strategy and governance officer Khalifa Al Shamsi (pictured) explained.
Speaking in the opening keynote, Al Shamsi said operators are “the backbone for digital transformation”, hailing the maturity of the industry’s infrastructure and services, which he said should dictate the path of ICT transformation for countries and corporations.
“Our role is extremely vital to increase the global competitiveness productivity and innovation of countries.”
However, he believes governments, particularly in the MENA region, continue to push the boundaries with their technology agendas and are “now shifting their priorities to put their nations at an advantageous stage within the grand scheme of digital transformation”. The shift represents an evolution from traditional governments’ former priorities and shows a commitment to the digital agenda, he said.
“Operators should be the driving force behind the maturity of the digital ecosystem, capitalising on investments and playing an active role in shaping a favourable regulatory regulatory landscape, forming relevant partnerships and the offering foresight for use cases.”
Summing up the importance of technology in the region, and the world, Al Shamsi added: “Less than ten years ago, things like artificial intelligence, IoT, augmented reality, virtual reality and blockchain were far off. Now we find them in the heart of the strategies of nations and corporations.”Subscribe to our daily newsletter