Ericsson has signed a memorandum of understanding with Tunisia’s Ministry of Communication Technologies and Digital Economy to spur innovation in the country’s ICT sector.
Hans Vestberg, President and CEO, Ericsson, said: "Leveraging ICT, governments can build cities with smart transport systems and optimised energy consumption, as well as transforming health care and education. ICT will play an important role in sustainable and inclusive development in every part of business and society. I believe that taking a holistic, proactive and collaborative approach is how we ensure that we have a future where cities and countries develop in a sustainable way".
Vestberg says: "Tunisia is one of many countries where Ericsson has a long-standing presence. We have been part of the country's communications technology evolution since 1964, and with this initiative we further solidify our commitment to the future ICT development of Tunisia."
The Ministry of Communication Technologies and Digital Economy will host application and services developers and start-ups in an innovation centre called El Ghazala Technopark,in Tunis. Ericsson will provide them access to its IoT-platform, in an "as-a-Service" model. In addition, Ericsson Tunisia will place IoT experts as facilitators of innovation in the El Ghazala Technopark.
Ericsson also confirmed the opening of an Ericsson service-centre in the Elghazala Technopark. The centre will be a hub for Ericsson's services organization supporting customers in the Mediterranean region and Africa.
These initiatives are in line with the National Strategic Plan Digital Tunisia 2018, which focuses on enabling digital technology projects with the potential to support Tunisia's economic development. The plan endorses the private sector's contribution to developing ICT in Tunisia, and defines ICT as a transformation tool to improve industry competitiveness and public service effectiveness.
The telecommunications market in Tunisia will generate estimated revenues of US$1.5 billion in 2015, a 4.1% increase in local currency terms from 2014. Mobile data growth, driven by social networks, OTT communication and video, is a key factor in this increase. More than 40% of Tunisian mobile subscribers use 3G technologies, a figure projected to rise to around 85% by 2020. Commercial LTE launches are expected to begin in 2016.