Li Xiangyu speaking to media representatives from the UAE at the company’s headquarters in Beijing. Image Credit: Supplied

Beijing: Huawei, a leading global provider of communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices, aims to continue its success in the UAE by focusing on Research and Development (R&D), among other things, according to Li Xiangyu, deputy chief of communications and public relations.

Huawei is giving R&D a priority and allocating a considerable chunk of its revenues in that area.

“First, the basic platform is R&D,” Li said, responding to a question on the company’s strategy to increase business in the UAE. “Next focus [will be] on carriers’ businesses, consumers and enterprises,” he said, speaking to a group of media representatives from the UAE visiting Huawei’s executive offices in Beijing.

Nearly 80,000 employees were engaged in R&D, and they comprise 45 per cent of the workforce, according to the company’s 2017 annual report.

Huawei’s R&D expenditure totalled 89.7 billion yuan (nearly Dh49.4 billion), which is nearly 14.9 per cent of the company’s revenue. Huawei “staff are working hard to do their best [for development], because we are serving 170 countries,” he said.

Last year, the company shipped 153 million smartphones, and its global brand awareness has increased to 86 per cent. The number of consumers considering buying a Huawei device in non-Chinese markets saw a year-on-year increase of 100 per cent, which put Huawei among the top three global vendors in this category for the first time,” according to the report.

Commenting on the company’s strategy in the UAE market, Li said the company will build on the already existing “good reputation” and continue to gain the trust of its partners and the UAE’s two carriers, etisalat and du.”

“Another factor is that the consumer business in growing very fast in the Middle East,” he said.

The future also looks good for the enterprise markets, and the “market is huge between the enterprise and consumer” in the region, the spokesperson said.

According to the 2017 annual report, the Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region, has generated 4.7 per cent increase in revenues due to the accelerated pace of digital transformation among enterprises and a growing share of the smartphone market.

Other regions such as Asia-Pacific and the Americas recorded a 10.3 per cent increase and 10.9 per cent decrease respectively. The decrease in the Americas came because of fluctuations in telecom investments cycles in South America. Total revenues of the company last year stood at 604,621 million yuan, a 15.7 per cent increase.

The Chinese company is building strong commercial ties with big telecom operators across Europe and Asia, putting it in a prime position to lead the global race for next-generation 5G networks.