Huawei Technologies will invest $400 million over the next five years in New Zealand, with plans in place to build a cloud data centre and establish Innovation Labs in Christchurch and Wellington.
Revealed during a meeting with Prime Minister Bill English in the capital, Huawei founder and CEO, Ren Zhengfei, outlined his commitment to bolstering research and development efforts on Kiwi shores.
Specifically, Ren discussed ICT infrastructure build-out and digital transformation plans, outlining’s the tech giant’s investment plan for New Zealand - including local procurement, R&D, and cloud computing infrastructure initiatives.
As part of its investment, Huawei will work with local partners to build a New Zealand cloud data centre, with its location at this stage still unknown.
Furthermore, the Chinese vendor will open an Innovation Lab at Victoria University of Wellington in 2017, focusing on the use of big data, and how to maximise the potential of the Internet of Things through future technology such as 5G.
“New Zealand's open and fair trade environment, and its emphasis on developing new technology, facilitates our ongoing commitment,” Ren said.
“New Zealand has rich tourism resources, and highly developed agricultural and trade sectors.
“Digital transformation empowered by advanced ICT technology can enable New Zealand to become better connected with the world, and transform its traditional strengths into driving forces of economic growth.”
In addition, Ren said Huawei will also seek new R&D partnerships to establish an Innovation Lab in Christchurch.
Furthermore, Huawei's Seeds for the Future program will expand to 100 New Zealand undergraduate students over the next five years, enabling Kiwi students to travel to China to learn about technology and cultural exchanges.
As a result of the increased local investment, Huawei - which is distributed by Atlas Gentech and Exeed in New Zealand - also committed to opening a regional office in Wellington, purchasing more goods and services locally, while helping local businesses integrate into its global supply chain network.
Huawei began its Kiwi operations in 2005, and partners with all major operators including Spark, 2degrees and Vodafone, providing much of the technology behind the New Zealand Government's Ultra-Fast Broadband initiative.
Today, more than half of New Zealanders are using Huawei's products and solutions.