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Alibaba Cloud announces business expansion in Southeast Asia

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Alibaba Cloud announces business expansion in Southeast Asia

Alibaba Cloud, the cloud computing arm of China‘s internet giant Alibaba, on Thursday announced the building of its third data center in Indonesia, and the formation of a cloud ecosystem alliance in the Philippines.


Selina Yuan, President of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence International, said Alibaba Cloud has become the largest cloud service provider in regional markets, including Malaysia and Indonesia.

The business expansion in Indonesia came after Alibaba Cloud built its first data center in 2018 in the country, with the second center constructed last year.

Alibaba Cloud currently has over 20 local partners from various industries in the Philippines, and plans to help 5,000 local businesses in their digital migration, and train 50,000 local professionals within the next three years.

The company ranked first in the Asia Pacific region with a market share of 28.2 percent in 2019, up 2.2 percentage points from the previous year, according to global research and advisory firm Gartner.

(XINHUA)

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Defence/Security

Digital economy: Nigeria must shift focus from certificate to skills – Pantami

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The Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, has advocated for shifting of focus from certificate to skills education for the actualisation of Nigeria’s digital economic drive.


Pantami made the call at the Graduation Lecture of the National Defence Collage Course 28, titled; “Digital Economy and National Development in Nigeria”, on Tuesday in Abuja.

He said that digital literacy and skills was one of the pillars outlined for the development of the digital economy of Nigeria in line with the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS).

The minister added that emphasis on certificate must be reduced in engaging labour force, urging that focus should be shifted to skills if the nation must catch up with development.

He said that many developed and developing countries such as China, United States and Morocco had shifted attention to skills rather than certificate, adding that many of them had established skills centres.

According to him, certificate is important but secondary to skill and that is why we must pay attention to skills in our journey to digital economy.

“The digital literacy and skills pillar recognises the fact that citizens are the greatest assets in any economy, including the digital economy. It will support the development of a large pool of digitally literate and digitally skilled citizens.

“We recently provided a platform, the DigitalNigeria.gov.ng platform, to enable Nigerians receive training in diverse digital skills. Over 36,000 Nigerians have enrolled on the platform since the 2nd of April, 2020.

“We are championing a paradigm change that lays emphasis on skills, in preference to merely having degrees without skills.

“The National Defence College is an institution that supports the development of skills and there are many digital techniques that can support the great work that you are doing here,’’ he said.

Pantami stated that the digital economy was a prime catalyst for development, adding that in less than one year, government’s modest efforts had already yielded remarkable results.

According to him, the recent first quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) Report released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that ICT contributed an unprecedented 14.07 per cent to Nigeria’s total real GDP.

The minister further disclosed that the national security architecture must key into the digital revolution in tackling the prevailing security challenge using digital technology.

He explained that emerging technologies came with different solutions to security challenges of every nation such as data analytics, artificial intelligence, robotic technology, drone and many more.

“These are some of the emerging technologies that will go a long way in promoting security of nations. The security officials are in better position to look into and see how to customize them and make use of them.”

Also, the Minister of Defence, Maj.-Gen. Bashir Magashi, said the Federal Government had taken steps to adopt, adapt and internalise the digital economy in a functional manner.

Magashi, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Sabiu Zakari, said it was important that security and defence establishments show more than a cursory interest in the digital economy.

He added that the adaptation of digital economy could result in increased cybercrimes thus undermining national security.

“I wish to commend the Commandant, staff and the entire College community for their collective efforts in pursuing the ideals of the College.

“In particular, I commend you for organising the graduation lecture, which was exciting, educative and would be helpful to the economic and security needs of the Nigerian nation,’’ he said.

Earlier, the Commandant of the collage, Rear Adm. Markson Kadiri, said the lecture had become a key component of the training programme of the College and a major highlight of its annual graduation ceremonies.

Kadiri said that a total of 107 participants had successfully completed the course comprising 67 officers of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, seven Senior Police Officers and 15 participants from key Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).

Others according to him, include 18 senior military officers from the Armed Forces of friendly nations.

“A large part of the Course was conducted online, after the general lockdown associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The Course was conducted under the theme “Economic Diversification and National Development in Nigeria”. Economic diversification is a broad based strategy designed to cause positive and multi-sectoral economic growth and development,’’ he said.

Edited By: Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)

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Economy

China’s A-share market sees IPO boom in July

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Initial public offerings (IPO) in China’s A-share market continued apace last month over advanced capital market reform, Shanghai Securities News reported Tuesday.


In July, IPOs in the country’s A-share market raised a record amount of 109.81 billion yuan (about 15.73 billion United States dollars), surpassing 100 billion yuan in a single month the first time, said the paper.

A total of 52 firms were listed in July, accounting for 30 per cent of the total number of IPOs in the first seven months of 2020, which stood to 169.

In breakdown, the main board of the Shanghai Stock Exchange attracted 35 listings while the Growth Enterprise Market of the Shenzhen Stock Exchange hosted 43 IPOs from January to July, the paper reported.

Meanwhile, the STAR market, or the sci-tech innovation board of the Shanghai Stock Exchange, saw 73 companies listed during the same period.

The stock market posted stronger gains amid the robust IPO activities, the paper reported in July, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index, Shenzhen Component Index and ChiNext Index, China’s NASDAQ-style board of growth enterprises, went up 10.9 per cent, 13.72 per cent and 14.65 per cent, respectively.

Experts say that sufficient liquidity has created conditions for high-quality companies in different industries to raise funds in the A-share market, thus directing funds from the capital market to the real economy.

 

Edited By: Dorcas Jonah/Wale Ojetimi (NAN)

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Foreign

Ford Motor’s CEO steps down amid waning investors’ confidence

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The Chief Executive Officer of Ford Motor Company, Jim Hackett, is stepping down on Oct. 1 after three years at the helm.


In a statement on Tuesday, the American multinational automaker said Hackett would be succeeded by Jim Farley, its Chief Operating Officer.

According to reports, Hackett’s exit is coming amid the company’s $11 billion (N4 trillion) global restructuring programme said to be floundering.

Reuters reports that the No. 2 United States carmaker also “faces slumping demand in China, its second-largest market’’.

The 65-year-old outgoing CEO failed to secure investors’ confidence in his leadership amid a sharp crash in the value of the company’s stock under his watch.

Under his leadership, Ford has struggled with product launch problems involving the Ford Explorer, the Lincoln Navigator and the Police Interceptor.

But shares of the company rose by 2.8 per cent in early trading, on Tuesday, according to the news agency.

Farley, 58, joined Ford in 2007 and headed the company’s new businesses, technology and strategy group before being named COO in March.

He will be the Ford’s fourth chief executive officer since the 2008 economic crash, reports say.

Edited By: Josephine Obute/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

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Foreign

Philippine capital, surrounding provinces return to lockdown

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More than 27 million people in the Philippines on Tuesday went back under stricter lockdown measures as the Health Department reported a record number of new coronavirus cases.


The department reported 6,352 additional coronavirus infections, pushing the country’s total caseload to 112,593.

The department added that death toll also rose to 2,115, following 11 additional deaths.

Meanwhile, almost half of the additional cases were confirmed in the Metro Manila region, which has been placed under what is locally called modified enhanced community quarantine for the next 15 days.

The protocol was also imposed in the four surrounding provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal.

Also, public transport, private and government offices and other commercial services were suspended in the five regions, while people were prohibited from leaving their homes unless for essential trips.

Dine-in services in restaurants were also suspended, and some of the 16 cities in Metro Manila re-imposed a ban on alcohol.

Catholic churches were once again closed to the public, as well as beauty salons and gyms.

Coronavirus cases in the Philippines have been increasing since the government began to ease restrictions in June in a bid to revive the economy.

The spike has prompted doctors, nurses and other health care workers to call on the government to recalibrate the response to the pandemic.

One of the doctors who joined the call warned that if the infections were not halted, the country would be the next New York City, where people die on stretchers due to lack of space in hospitals.

Health Undersecretary Maria Vergeire urged the public to follow minimum health standards of wearing face masks, frequent handwashing and maintaining physical distance.

“We all know the situation in the country. We all know that as long as there is no vaccine or cure, we have to learn to live with the virus.

“That is why we are always reminding the public to follow health protocols,” she said.

Edited By: Yahaya Isah/Maharazu Ahmed (NAN)

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