China's Huawei Technologies recently brought its technology gathering, dubbed "Broader Way Forum," to Paris as the company tries to reach out to France's information and telecommunications industry.
The forum brought together government and industry players, including thought leaders, to give them an opportunity to debate about the future of the digital society in France and worldwide. This is in recognition of the fact that France is home to some of the big names in the global ICT and engineering industries, and has some of the top schools in the world.
The telecommunications equipment manufacturer said it works with some of these big names in fixed and mobile telecoms industry in France and collaborates with some of their leading universities.
At the forum, Huawei's top official urged French companies and organisations to invest in some of the latest technologies as these would do good to their citizens and would help further the country's leadership in technology.
"The digital society was conceived 10 years ago and has transformed peoples' lives and the way businesses operate in France. Yet we are only at the beginning," said Ken Hu, deputy chairman and acting CEO, Huawei. "The opportunities are great, but so are the challenges. Telecom companies should be encouraged to make investments to roll out faster networks, and we need more affordable services and devices to bring the digital society within reach of the millions of French citizens who cannot afford to participate right now."
To help France overcome this challenge of making more citizens participate in the digital society, Hu suggested that the country focus their efforts on solutions that encourage collaboration and innovation. He also urged government, policy makers, the ICT industry and other stakeholders to work closely together to address this digital society issue.
"France is a great country. It already has a number of advantages, like your rich history of embracing engineering and your world-class education system. These are key advantages as you look to retain a leading position in the digital economy," Hu added.
Among the technologies Hu championed as possible investment opportunities is cloud computing which, he said, can help France make valuable use of big data.
Huawei employs more than 600 highly skilled people in France.
Just recently, Huawei also brought its Broader Way Forum to Mobile World Congress 2013 in Spain. The forum was launched in MWC 2012 and has since been brought to other parts of the world. It seeks to encourage dialogue and concrete actions "to promote broadband innovation as an enabler of social and economic development around the world."
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