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As part of the official delegation from Qatar, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulla Al Thani, chief executive officer at Ooredoo Qatar, joined a panel discussion on the importance of innovation in telecommunications at the prestigious St Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) in Russia.
Senior-level participants discussed and exchanged ideas on the role of innovation in business strategy in their industry and explored opportunities for both Qatari and Russian technology start-ups and SMEs with their organisations.

On his part, Sheikh Mohammed shared Ooredoo’s longstanding investment in innovation, highlighting its partnerships with global innovation leaders and Qatari entities and its commitment to initiatives promoting innovation in the telecommunications industry.

Commenting on this participation, Sheikh Mohammed said, “I was honoured to take part in this valuable panel discussion with several of my counterparts from both Qatari and Russian entities. As a leading telecommunications operator reliant on groundbreaking technology to enable us to maintain our position as an industry pioneer, forums such as these are the ideal platform on which we can share insight and expertise for the benefit of us all. We extend our thanks to the organisers for the opportunity to join the panel, and look forward to more such opportunities as the event continues.”

Separately, he appeared in a televised interview with Russian TV channel RT Arabic, conducted on the sidelines of SPIEF, where he spoke about Qatar’s participation in the forum, the challenges Ooredoo as well as the entire telecommunications industry has faced in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the potential for future collaboration between Ooredoo and its counterparts in Russia.

Sheikh Mohammed shared his thoughts on strengthening bilateral ties between the two countries, highlighting the presence of many senior-level representatives that confirms the intention to boost relationships and economic links. He also emphasised the opportunity the forum presents for entities to share best practice, experience and expertise, and expressed his hope that Qatar-Russia ties will progress to the next level.

With the ongoing pandemic situation, Sheikh Mohammed explained in detail the challenges faced by Ooredoo, including the phenomenal increase in demand for connectivity and network speed, and how and why Ooredoo had been able to weather the COVID-19 storm, continue seamless service to its customers and maintain a stable operational position. Sheikh Mohammed also noted the unilateral focus on the emergence of a digital economy, and highlighted Qatar’s position as a leader in digital transformation.

SPIEF has seen great interest in Qatar as the host of the next FIFA World Cup in 2022, and Sheikh Mohammed discussed Ooredoo’s role in the upcoming event during the interview. He noted the many opportunities to share expertise and best practice with Russian counterparts at the forum, with Russia having been the experienced host of many such events in the past. He confirmed Ooredoo’s readiness to take on the challenge of the tournament, and expressed his pleasure at the prospect of working with Russian telecomms providers to ensure the success of FIFA World Cup 2022 in Doha.

Ooredoo is currently part of a delegation of companies representing Qatar at SPIEF, being held from 2-5 June 2021 in Russia.

Several of Ooredoo’s executive senior managers are attending the event, which is intended to act as a platform for members of the international business community to meet and discuss key economic issues pertinent to Russia, emerging markets and the world as a whole.

The event also covers social and cultural issues and technological development, and provide an opportunity to improve business collaboration between Qatar and Russia.

Ooredoo is hosting a booth at the event, focusing on its path to the major football event being held in Doha in 2022, and its executive senior management is meeting with some of Russia’s leading technology companies and telecom operators.

Qatar is participating this year as a guest country at the SPIEF, as well as the first sessions of the business program involving the leading business, cultural and religious representatives of the Middle Eastern country. Guests witnessed the opening of the National Pavilion of the State of Qatar by His Excellency Sheikh Mohammad Bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, Qatar’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Yuri Borisov, Deputy Chairman of the Government of the Russian Federation.
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