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UNIDO and Huawei Showcase Merits of their Alliance at European Smart 5G Supply in Waalwijk

Dec 13, 2023

[Waalwijk, Netherlands, December 13, 2023] Huawei and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) demonstrated how digital tools, including AI and 5G, can boost the competitiveness of global industries and shape sustainable development at Huawei’s smart 5G European Supply Center in Waalwijk, Netherlands. UNIDO and Huawei had previously joined hands under the Global Alliance for Artificial Intelligence in Industry and Manufacturing (AIM Global), of which Huawei is a strategic partner. The two partners spoke at a tour of the facility organized for regional media.

During the event, Vicky Zhang, Huawei’s Vice President of Corporate Communications, said that digitalization and automation are two industry megatrends and a key to our future. The two trends are rapidly transforming our lives with new technologies such as 5G, AI, and cloud computing leading us towards a more intelligent and low-carbon world. It is also the reason why Huawei has become a strategic partner of UNIDO’s AIM Global Alliance.


Vicky Zhang addressing the media at Waalwijk

Ana Paula Nishio de Sousa, Chief of Digital Transformation and AI Strategies at UNIDO, stressed the importance of inclusive sustainable development: “Inclusivity means engaging all sectors of society and leaving no one behind. Sustainability refers to safeguarding against negative environmental impacts. AIM Global follows these principles. It is a partnership open for everybody, for public sector, academia, governments, and industrial associations. It's about elevating the state of AI in the industry manufacturing and making it inclusive and sustainable. I'm proud to say that Huawei is a strategic and a very active member.”


Ana Paula Nishio de Sousa, Chief of Digital Transformation and AI Strategies at UNIDO

5G plays a crucial role in boosting productivity by enabling self-driving vehicles, AI-driven quality control, and AR-assisted remote maintenance. These technologies were showcased during the event. Based on current trends, the combination of 5G, cloud computing and AI will be used in a growing number of scenarios in the near future to herald a new industrial era: Industry 4.0.


Automated Guided Vehicle (AGV) in the supply center

Sandor Papp, Deputy Head of the European Supply Center, said: “We have four supply centers in the world. We are one of them, covering more than 40 countries inside and outside of Europe. We deliver more than half a million cubic meters per year. In the Supply Center, a 5G private network covers roughly half of the area; its greatest advantage is the low latency and the big speed. Every device can enjoy up to two gigabytes per second in speed. That means that even the transmission of video is not a problem in that speed. Using the latest technologies, such as AI/AR and smart algorithm, we can manage faster inbound and outbound and much more accurate confirmations to our deliveries.”

Prof. Dr. Patrick Glauner from Deggendorf Institute of Technology highlighted the importance of talent for a successful digital transformation. He said: “Now, when it comes to increased automation and AI in industry, it's not just about costs and making everyone unemployed. Here in Europe, and I think it's the same in China, there is a huge demographic change. There is a lack of talent. We have an aging society, so it's not just about doing things cheaper or with less people. It's actually about that you are still able to do things, because there are less and less people available to do that work. And AI allows us to compensate this and address the aging society and lack of talent.”

Huawei's regional distribution centers in Europe are located in the Netherlands and Hungary, delivering timely, customized products to more than 40 countries in EU, Central Asia and North Africa.

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