EEC Teams Up with Four Global Innovation Leaders, Including Cisco Systems, Mavenir Systems, 5GCT, and Planet Com to Arm Thai Workers with Essential Digital Skills for the Future

  • The partnership is to drive 5G innovations and speed up transition towards Industry 4.0 in EEC
  • More than 40,000 workers are expected to become well-trained for the digital industry in three years
  • Collaborations will be undertaken to attract investment from targeted industries, strengthen the Thai economy to compete in the world stage, and create highly skilled Thai workers for sustainable income

October 15th, 2021: the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) Office, Cisco Systems (Thailand) Company Limited, Mavenir Systems (Thailand) Company Limited, 5G Catalyst Technologies Company Limited, and Planet Communication Asia Public Company Limited, organized an online MOU signing ceremony for “5G & Digital Talent Development in EEC”.

His Excellency Michael Heath, Chargé d’ Affaires a.i. of the U.S. Mission in Thailand, presided over the ceremony. Dr. Kanit Sangsubhan, Secretary General of the Eastern Economic Corridor Office of Thailand, together with senior executives from the four companies, signed on the MOU. Dr. Apichart Thongyu, Chairman of a Working Committee of the Eastern Economic Corridor Human Development Center (EEC HDC), Dr. Djitt Laowattana, Special Advisor, Education/ Human Capital and Technology Development at the Eastern Economic Corridor Office of Thailand, and more than 100 management executives from universities and vocational colleges in EEC, attended the event.

Dr. Kanit Sangsubhan, Secretary-General of the Eastern Economic Corridor Office of Thailand, said: “This event will help strengthen good investment relations between Thailand and the United States. In the past 10 years, the United States has invested in Thailand up to 160 billion USD, and in 2020, direct investment from the country surpassed 20 billion USD. Particularly for industrial investment in the EEC, both countries have development policies to promote bio-economy, circular economy, and green economy (BCG) that will lead to the cooperation in the development of environmentally friendly businesses. This will be driven in conjunction with investments in new targeted industries in accordance with the EEC Investment Plan – Phase 2, which will generate a total investment value of not less than 2.2 trillion baht, with focus on innovations and advanced technologies in emerging segments like EV, transportation, medical, and 5G.”

“Today’s signing is considered an extension of cooperation to push forward and promote the constant application of 5G. The EEC has worked with the four companies in a pilot project using 5G technology to transform Ban Chang Sub-district Municipality into a Smart City. There are improvements in its digital infrastructure now and it is expected that by the end of 2021, a total of 160 5G smart poles will be installed, which will cover the entire Ban Chang area. This provides a pioneering step towards Factory 4.0, transforming the entire area into a smart industrial city for the future and enhancing the quality of life of people in the Ban Chang community in all dimensions.”

“This partnership will also help connect the dots in the skill development of workers while promoting the application of digital and 5G technologies within the industrial sector. On a demand-driven basis, it is projected to upskill and reskill more than 40,000 workers within 3 years to increase Thailand’s competitiveness in the global market and improve the average income of Thai workers for a better quality of life in a balanced and sustainable manner”

Dr. Djitt Laowattana, Special Advisor, Education/Human Capital and Technology Development, the Eastern Economic Corridor Office of Thailand, said: “5G technology is an important innovation that helps support and expand the opportunity to create a wide range of digital services to meet the needs of more users in the industrial sector. Today’s rising reliance on the high-speed 5G connection provides high accuracy and minimal error, especially in the robotics industry and automated production systems. Currently, the EEC is proceeding with the application of 5G technology to transform the industrial sector into a smart engine of development by using Digital Manufacturing 4.0. It is expected that more than 10,000 factories will be transformed within 5 years. Besides, industrial workforce in the EEC will be equipped with practical knowledge from partners who signed the MOU today. As a result, the EEC will be well-positioned to attract and ready to serve entrepreneurs from around the world looking to invest in digital businesses.”

Dr. Apichart Thongyu, Chairman of the Working Committee of the Eastern Economic Corridor Human Development Center (EEC HDC), pointed out that the EEC has successfully collaborated with foreign agencies to equip workers with knowledge of modern technology. “Today, we have built on the success of working with these four alliances to further develop more advanced digital skills for workers. Based on the demand-driven approach, we are speeding up in producing talented workforce that meet the needs of the targeted industries in the EEC. We have signed many MOUs with key partners. For instance, the 5G ICT and Digital Development initiative under the Huawei ASEAN Academy, of which 30,000 workers will be trained for digital skills within 3 years. Our partnership with Mitsubishi Electric is also underway to drive the EEC Automation Park. This concentrates on the adoption of advanced technologies and targeting 8,000 factories in the EEC.”

Mr. Taveewat Chantaraseno, Managing Director of Cisco Systems (Thailand) Limited, a global leader in IT and networking systems, said “Cisco recognizes the significance of workforce reskilling and upskilling to enhance workflow and knowledge base in areas such as industrial networking and security for smart transportation, wireless systems for industrial use and smart city applications, data center system, and network management system that combines IP and 5G into a single platform. The company has taken part in developing a new talented workforce to drive businesses extra miles and ready to boost business growth.

Mr. Norman Donald Price, Global Chief Technical Officer Emerging Business & Enterprise BU. at Mavenir Systems (Thailand) Company Limited, a leader in network software, said: “The EEC is considered as a gateway to one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Besides, it is a strategic location of talented workforce with a variety and the environment that is constantly evolving and moving forward. Mavenir Systems is determined to build a network of the future with our cloud native software, a cloud system that works on any cloud and transforms the way people get connected in today’s world. This MOU demonstrates the commitment to moving forward in the region and plays an important role in providing workforce with the necessary skills. Moreover, it reflects the necessity of 5G for driving a sustainable economy.”

Ms. Sharinee Kalayanamitr, Chief Executive Officer 5G Catalyst Technologies Company Limited, said “With the recent global challenges, the Covid-19 pandemic and the shift in supply chain with the US – China Trade War, digital transformation has been accelerated in government entities and businesses, thus requiring people to adopt the necessary skillset to understand and learn new technologies and to capitalise on future growth. She added, “In this partnership, 5GCT’s role is to act as bridge connecting the traditional cities and factories and hospitals of Thailand, arming them with cutting edge technologies from global startups and SMEs. With this 5G Connected Tech Training Program, we aim to create a learning and certification platform where entrepreneurs, startups and government entities can learn essential skills needed to make the most out of the 5G network, which has become an infrastructure foundation in Thailand. To solve new problems, create new applications, use cases, and in turn contribute to the growing digital transformation of Thailand. By the Q4/2021, we will be hosting webinars to identify impeding problems of smart cities and industrial 4.0 development and provide workshops to design sustainable solutions. This program will be launched next year to support 300 entrepreneurs and technology workers annually.

Mr. Prapat Rathlertkarn, President & Chief Executive Officer of Planet Communications Asia Public Company Limited, also said, “This collaboration focuses on building a knowledge base and a strategic for Smart City Data platform and IoT platform, which are important to drive education in the EEC area and help EEC HDC to gain more public attention and recognition. It is also set to be the center of technology learning and investment within EEC.”

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