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STC and its partner in 5G network deployment in the Middle East, Huawei, have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Saudi Aramco to launch a joint innovation program to study the application of 5G technology in the oil and gas industry and develop solutions. The MoU is expected to fuel economic growth and societal benefits in the Kingdom and around the world.

Aramco and STC have reached a consensus that 5G is a key technology for the fourth industrial revolution and digital transformation in the oil and gas industry. The two companies have deemed it necessary to make 5G a priority and undertake further investments in resources to achieve in-depth research and innovation in this area. Both parties proposed a roadmap of 5G network construction, services innovations, verifications and deployments for the oil and gas industry.

This ambitious plan will guide both parties to jointly analyze the application and requirements of 5G in the oil and gas industry, and eventually develop and promote relevant innovative solutions. It also aims to greatly promote the application of 5G technology in regional and global energy industries.

Ahmad Al-Sa’adi, Aramco technical services senior vice president, said: “We recognize 5G as a major enabling technology for digital transformation. Therefore, we will continue to collaborate with local service providers and their partners to co-innovate and develop solutions for new digital use cases and pilot them over 5G networks at our facilities.”

Dr. Sultan bin Saeed, STC vice president of business development, said, “Saudi Arabia has entered the acceleration phase of 5G commercialization. In this era of Internet of Everything, 5G networks — thanks to their high speeds, massive connection capabilities and low latency — will become engines of rapid development across industries. Through joint efforts with Aramco, STC, as a trusted digital enabler in the region, will fully leverage the advantages of 5G, AI, and cloud-network synergy to promote innovation and digital transformation, creating new value for the oil and gas industry.”

In the next few years, the two parties will jointly explore the fast deployment of the 5G enterprise-dedicated network for the oil and gas industry, and study the feasibility of the relevant applications in order to establish industry digitization standards for the sector.

Both parties will use key technologies such as E2E 5G slicing, multi-access edge computing, and massive IoT to deploy an 5G enterprise-dedicated network and key use cases for Aramco’s upstream, middle and downstream production services, such as 3D augmented reality and remote collaboration, smart video surveillance, intelligent security management, machine vision, and drone and robot applications, so as to directly drive and serve the digitization of the oil and gas industry.

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