Bahrain’s Ministry of Transportation and Telecommunications recently reported that the island nation had become one of the first countries in the world to accomplish nationwide 5G coverage. Two of its three mobile operators now provide high-speed internet service to all of the nation’s 1.5 million population.
The Ministry of Transportation and Telecommunications expects the nationwide 5G coverage to generate new opportunities for streaming, gaming, and supply chain technologies.
“Rapid access to information is essential to innovation, particularly for next-generation services,” said Kamal bin Ahmed Mohamed, Bahrain’s Minister of Transportation and Telecommunications. “In this way, 5G is a crucial step in Bahrain’s ongoing transition from a net consumer to a net producer of technological innovation,” he added.
Thanks to its strategy of flexible regulation of the telecoms sector, Bahrain was able to attract 787 million BHD in investments (more than $2 billion) between 2009 and 2019, and the country’s ICT sector now accounts for nearly 3 percent of its entire GDP.
Now that the country has achieved nationwide 5G coverage, it will be more attractive in the eyes of technology companies interested in providing data-driven services in the region, helping it strengthen its position as a regional and global ICT leader.
Full nationwide 5G coverage is in line with Bahrain’s comprehensive economic vision, described in a document entitled The Economic Vision 2030. The document highlights, among other things, the importance of technology for ensuring the sustainability of a vibrant private sector and attractive innovators and entrepreneurs from around the globe.
Last year, Bahrain became home to the region’s first hyper-scale data center after the launch of the AWS Middle East Region by Amazon. Considering that there will be over 1 billion 5G connections by 2023, the Gulf kingdom is in an excellent position to meet its digital transformation goals.
LEAP 2024 Will Shine A Light On Female Innovators In Technology
Women comprise nearly a third of the event’s speaker lineup alongside a dedicated program of high-level content, investment, and mentorship.
LEAP 2024, a premier global technology event, will highlight the achievements of women in the technology sector as it returns for its third edition at the Riyadh Exhibition and Convention Centre in Malham district from March 4 to 7.
Hosted by Tahaluf, a strategic collaboration between Informa PLC, the Events Investment Fund (EIF), and the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming, and Drones (SAFCSP), LEAP 2024 will feature a dedicated program titled “Women in Tech”. The program will offer enriching content, investment opportunities, networking sessions, mentorship programs, and a special startup award.
The initiative aims to inspire women to actively participate in the technology industry, aligning with broader diversity efforts. Reflecting the Kingdom’s commitment to equality, the focus on “Women in Tech” coincides with the increasing female participation at LEAP events.
Annabelle Mander, Senior Vice President of Tahaluf, emphasized the event’s commitment to gender inclusivity, stating, “Female representation is across all of LEAP’s features and reflects the event’s mission of driving economic diversification and providing market access to international business. Within Tahaluf itself, half of our team members are women, and women make up half of our SMT, too”.
The “Women in Tech” program will feature distinguished speakers including Nadine Hachach Haram, CEO and Founder of Proximie, and Sahar Albanarna from IMPACTIQUE Bahrain, who explained: “Over 26 million women worldwide with professional experience and degrees are not in the global workplace. This demographic includes a huge pool of untapped talent which technology can help unleash to fuel the co-creation of exponential solutions across multiple sectors. To help women access productive employment, we urge industry leaders to support high-impact female entrepreneurs as a means to boost their economies and accelerate the UN’s sustainable development goals by promoting inclusive and sustainable economic growth”.
The event will also provide a platform for female-led startups and entrepreneurs to pitch for funding and support through various initiatives such as the Women’s Investor Forum, Entrepreneur Mentorship Scheme, and the Aviatrix Award at the Rocket Fuel pitch competition, offering a prize fund of US$150,000.