What is your outlook for the ICT sector in Lebanon?
We expect market conditions to improve and in fact they have already improved as compared to last year. The government is working on all sectors, highlighting electricity and telecommunications, in order to make improvements. We aim to inject more foreign capital in the IT sector and further develop the local ICT sector. Lebanese people are known for their creativity and being up-to-date with the latest trends in the IT sector. Moreover, the local IT sector offers high-quality services with competitive prices. In order to attract more FDI, the government must focus on providing good infrastructure. To that end, the government and the Ministry of Telecommunications began building fiber optic infrastructure in 2018. By the end of 2019, we expect to see an increase in the speed of the delivery of fiber optic infrastructure. Equally important, the government created a new ministry for information technology. One of its tasks is to implement an e-government platform to facilitate bureaucratic procedures, which will be made in cooperation with the private sector. In total, 13 IT associations and syndicates recently formed the Lebanese ICT Federation to lobby for new laws concerning e-government and the ICT sector. A first step that shows we are on the right track was the approval of law 81 for e-signature in 2018.
How can youth's access to IT be improved?
The Beirut Digital District (BDD) project, led by the private sector, was a brilliant idea to facilitate access to information technology and support young entrepreneurs and startups. Now, as part of the Professional Computer Association (PCA), we are campaigning for an expansion of the digital district to other areas and create “digital clusters" throughout the country. This will facilitate the creation of new companies and start-ups. Furthermore, it will reduce costs for companies in Beirut, and employees will not need to commute long distances or relocate. Concerning our company, we are aiming to launch a training program system that will focus on harnessing the creative youth, where one person will be selected each year to become a partner of our group. Lebanon has one of the best education curriculums and is a leader in the MENA region in dealing with education and technology. It is important to capitalize on this and support the human talent that our schools produce.
What are the strengths of your company?
We value our customers, which is why we provide solutions that benefits them. We create digital transformations, work in different sectors, and build our experience. One of our great recent achievements is working on the e-government project. We offer a complete list of services, including infrastructure, software systems, security, and digital marketing. We have done projects in Iraq with the Central Bank and the Ministry of Housing and Construction. We have a presence in Europe, especially in Cyprus and Germany, as well as in Sierra Leon and Gabon, where we work on large telecom projects. We are working on strengthening our presence in Europe to increase our business and target several sectors. Digital marketing was recently bunched because we believe it's the number-one way to market products, as it enables a higher level of penetration through phones and digital devices. We are currently working on two aspects, researchers and tools, to satisfy our customers' needs and generate a return on their investments.