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The Global Mobile Broadband Forum 2023 witnessed a groundbreaking moment in the telecom industry as Zain KSA and Huawei joined hands to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU). Telecom Review had the opportunity to participate in the signing ceremony and witness a significant step in the collaborative efforts towards green technology.

The partnership underscores Zain KSA's unwavering commitment to environmental sustainability, focusing on combating climate change and adopting eco-friendly energy solutions. It aligns with ESG (environmental, social, and governance) practices and the UN Sustainable Development Goals, with the goal of accelerating the adoption of green technology in Saudi Arabia.

A Pioneering Partnership for Green Technology

The signing of the MoU between Zain KSA and Huawei has piqued significant interest in the telecom industry. It signifies a substantial step towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly future for the sector. To shed light on this, Zain KSA and Huawei offered insights into the foundation of their green and energy-saving collaboration.

When asked about its commitment to sustainability, Zain KSA expressed its dedication to achieve this goal, stating that it had initiated numerous actions since 2022 to reduce CO2 emissions. These initiatives include the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs), recycling of waste and implementing green management practices throughout their core business operations. By focusing on energy-efficient solutions such as LED lighting and offering power-efficient solutions, Zain KSA aims to counteract the increasing power requirements associated with 5G technology.

The commitment to sustainability, as expressed by Zain KSA, is rooted in the need to take a long-term perspective on reducing CO2 emissions. By adopting advanced and innovative solutions, it seeks to support green network recession and work towards a more sustainable and greener 5G network.

The Three Pillars of Zain KSA's Sustainability Efforts

The MoU with Huawei reinforces Zain KSA's sustainability initiatives in three crucial areas:

  1. Transitioning to a 5G Green Network: As the demand for 5G technology grows, Zain KSA recognizes the need to minimize the environmental impact. Their efforts in transitioning to a 5G green network prioritize efficient resource usage and reduced power consumption.
  2. Optimizing Resource Efficiency: Advanced AI systems play a pivotal role in optimizing resource efficiency. By leveraging AI technology, Zain KSA can make better decisions, reduce waste and enhance sustainability across their operations.
  3. Pioneering a Zero-Emission 5G Network: In collaboration with Red Sea Global (RSG), Zain KSA is working on a pioneering project at the Six Senses Desert Dunes resort in the Red Sea. This initiative involves powering a 5G network with a staggering 760,000 solar panels. This not only exemplifies Zain KSA's commitment to clean energy but also aims to minimize visual disruption in the region.


Huawei's Perspective on Green Development

Huawei, a key player in this partnership, shares a similar vision for green development. In response to climate change, Huawei has identified energy conservation and carbon dioxide reduction as essential focus areas. Zain KSA's goal of achieving zero carbon emissions by 2050 aligns with Huawei's approach to incorporating green development throughout the entire lifecycle of their products.

Huawei's commitment extends beyond merely making network operations green. They aim to integrate green principles into the entire network maintenance lifecycle, reducing their dependence on natural resources. By doing so, they contribute to low carbon development throughout their network.

Innovative Technologies for Achieving Strategic Goals

During their innovative cooperation, Huawei and Zain KSA outline two key directions to help Zain achieve its strategic goals:

  1. Reducing energy consumption: Huawei is committed to helping Zain KSA reduce energy consumption in its wireless network operations. Through criteria such as Network Energy Efficiency Indicator System (NEE 2.0) and five energy-saving technologies, it aims to achieve  optimization of both network performance and energy conservation.
  2. Reducing energy consumption across the network lifecycle: In addition to network operation, Huawei focuses on energy reduction during equipment manufacturing, transportation and equipment recycling. This includes using energy-efficient materials, reducing equipment weight and implementing innovations to minimize energy consumption throughout the product lifecycle.

By addressing these aspects, Huawei and Zain KSA aim to accelerate Zain's journey toward achieving its green development strategic goals. This partnership represents a significant milestone in the telecom industry, one that showcases the power of collaboration in building a more sustainable and environmentally conscious future for Saudi Arabia and beyond.

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