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Omantel and SQU cooperate to boost Digital Economy in Oman

Muscat, January 19, 2022: Omantel, the first and leading integrated telecommunications services provider in the Sultanate, announced that it will continue supporting scientific research and innovation in the Sultanate by extending its research partnership with Sultan Qaboos University (SQU). The telecom company will lend its weight – for the fifth consecutive year – to the research scholarship initiative, the Omantel Research Fund. The fund will cover deserving and pathbreaking research topics in the field of ICT and Nanotechnology.

The agreement was signed by His Highness Sayyid Dr Fahad Bin Al Julanda Al Said Vice-Chancellor of Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) and Talal Bin Said Al Mamari CEO Omantel. The support is part of Omantel’s CSR Pillar, ‘Education’ which aims at contributing to a digital competent society in which everyone has equitable access to quality education, including technical and vocational skills. It aligns with the company’s commitment to the nation and aims to support Oman’s march toward a knowledge-based economy.

The funding by Omantel will contribute to the government’s efforts to boost Oman’s ranking in UNESCO’s Global Innovation’s University/industry Research Collaboration Index, Knowledge Creation Index and the Gross Expenditure on R&D Financed by Business Enterprise as a Percentage of Total Gross Expenditure on R&D.

The support also contributes towards the country’s effort in meeting United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 9, which aims to spur innovation and drive sustainable industries that work for everyone, and Goal 17 related to partnerships, especially the public private partnerships, and indirectly towards Goal 4 on the quality of education.

Saba bint Said Al Busaidi, Senior Manager Corporate Affairs at Omantel said, “Omantel is proud to be an enabler in Oman’s economic growth. Omantel is always looking for opportunities for contributing to the country’s intrinsic and global objectives in every sphere. The association with SQU in this regard has been a long and fruitful one, and we are confident that such initiatives will act as a catalyst for more and more people to take up relevant research, the results of which can be applied to boost efficiency, productivity and national growth.”

Following this, the joint committee between Omantel and Sultan Qaboos University met to evaluate and determine the winning ICT research proposals to be funded by Omantel in 2022. Omantel was represented by Dr. Yousef bin Salem Al Hinai, General Manager of Information and Communication Technologies, and Dr. Ali Al Hashimi, General Manager of Networks, whilst the university was represented by a specialized committee headed by Dr. Amer bin Saif Al-Hinai, Vice President for Graduate Studies and Scientific Research. The committee

approved funding a number of researches which reflect the applied aspect of scientific research in the two mentioned fields.

It is worth mentioning that Omantel's funding of scientific researches at Sultan Qaboos University is part of an ongoing collaborative project for the fifth year in a row, and it falls under the umbrella of Omantel's projects for community service and development. By supporting faculty and researchers in information and communications technology (ICT) and Nanotechnology, Omantel will enable researchers to collect and analyse data by using latest facilities and will encourage development of nanotechnology applications and usage in medicine, agriculture, environment, technology and engineering, and align national objectives with those listed under UNSDGs. So far, 40 researchers and 20 research projects have benefitted from the Omantel Research Fund. More will be added this year as the partnership opens yet another chapter of possibilities.

Omantel is the Sultanate’s first and leading integrated telecommunications services provider,

enabling the digital society to flourish, allowing new ways of doing business and delivering a

world of information, news and entertainment. While striving to ensure optimum customer

satisfaction, Omantel plays a key social role to provide the required support and subsidy to all sectors of the Omani society.