Cisco looks to Southeast Asia

Information technology giant Cisco is on a mission to increase global digitization and it has its eyes set on Southeast Asia.

The American multinational company operates a worldwide initiative called the Country Digital Acceleration strategy that helps nations make efficient use of big data, the Internet of Things and smart connectivity. Cisco hopes to increase a country’s competitiveness, economic growth, job creation and innovation through investments in the startup space, education, infrastructure and healthcare.

Southeast Asia is “primed” for the program, Guy Diedrich, vice president and global innovation officer at Cisco, told CNBC’s Akiko Fujita on Thursday. Not only is the region “very entrepreneurial,” it also boasts “a highly educated population” and “off the charts” gross domestic product growth, he said.

Speaking at the East West Tech conference in China’s Nansha district, Diedrich said the program essentially creates a digital architecture for a government and then builds an execution plan for stakeholders to follow. The goal, he explained, is to help countries transition into knowledge-based economies.

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