China's Huawei Technologies Co is set to build its leading cloud data centre in Southeast Asia in Thailand's Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) with an initial budget of US$10 million.
The company, also known for its smartphones, said this reflects its commitment to supporting the government and local businesses as Thailand embraces digital transformation as part of the 4.0 era roadmap.
The move is also part of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on public-private collaboration that was signed yesterday by Huawei Technologies (Thailand) and the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society (DE). It was witnessed by ACM Prajin Juntong, a deputy prime minister.
The MoU also includes provisions for consulting services to develop the government's big data ecosystem, paves the way to develop more talented people working in information and communications technology (ICT), and facilitates the growth of local SMEs and startups, according to Guo Ping, the rotating CEO of Huawei.
In a bid to speed up Thailand's digitisation, the company also plans to expand open platforms such as its OpenLab and Customer Solution Innovation & Integration Experience Centre (CSIC), which is located in Bangkok.
Qiang Hua, managing director of Huawei Thailand, said the company encourages stakeholders to proactively plan out their deployments of cloud infrastructure and position the EEC as an engine to drive Thailand's economic reforms and growth.
The budget of $10 million is an initial investment, the company said, adding it is now surveying a site for the first phase of construction.
"The leading cloud data centre will be a hybrid cloud for the government, enterprises, and individual users here," said Mr Qiang.
"This will help everyone across the ecosystem to better apply technologies like big data, Internet of Things [IoT] and artificial intelligence [AI] which will help drive toward the new economy."
ACM Prajin said the government is in the process of creating a new cloud data centre in the EEC and several large enterprises in leading ICT countries have shown interest in investing in this.
He said the working panel drafting plans for the government's new data centre aims to finish the paperwork this year, with an action plan due by March.
The centre will mainly serve government operations related to public services such as a disaster-warning system, he added.
"We welcome Huawei, which has given us much support in driving the country's digital transformation via several channels in both direct investment and by helping us improve ICT talents and local SMEs," ACM Prajin said.
He said it is too early to elaborate on the exact model of collaboration that will be used in creating the new centre.
"Public-private collaboration is a good option, but the government has to wait and consider other enterprises' proposals," he added.
This MoU will help accelerate economic growth, said ACM Prajin.