Gulf Energy, the global consortium of energy consultants and investors behind the $2.6 billion Energy City Qatar, announced today that it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Cisco Systems®, a networking company headquartered in San Jose, California.
The MoU relates to the development of a master plan for advanced technology solutions that will form part of the technological infrastructure required for the groundbreaking Qatar project.
Acting as technology adviser, Accelerator Technology Holdings, a company aimed at helping enterprises organisations identify, invest in and build best-in-class ventures in the information and communications technology (ICT) value chain in the Arab world, is a co-signatory to the MoU.
Under the MoU, Cisco Systems will be a key participant in the development of a holistic technology project master plan for Energy City Qatar, working with other technology leaders as well as Cisco channel partners and service providers. In addition, the MoU envisions that Cisco Systems will provide specialist services for Internet-related projects, including the design and creation of a connected real estate framework, data centres and an energy-trading platform.
The MoU with Cisco Systems forms part of the strategy of Energy City Qatar to enter into global partnerships with specialist providers. It follows a similar MoU recently signed with Microsoft.
Commenting on the MoU with Cisco Systems, Esam Janahi, chairman of Gulf Energy, said: “Energy City Qatar has been conceived as the Middle East’s first integrated energy business centre for the oil and gas industry in the region. It will be the most advanced centre of its type, wholly dedicated to serving the world’s major oil and gas companies.
“Access to technology will be a key business enabler and driver at Energy City Qatar, and our strategic partnership with Cisco Systems is a reflection of our resolve to create a highly advanced technology infrastructure for this project. We are confident that this relationship will be a major contribution towards developing Energy City Qatar into a technology-smart city.”
According to Mark De Simone, vice president for Cisco Systems Middle East and Africa: “We look forward to working with Gulf Energy to help them realize their vision of Energy City Qatar, and to contributing to this important element of Qatar’s drive to become a world-class hub for the energy industry. We plan to provide companies and individuals working and residing in Energy City Qatar with advanced solutions that will help them increase productivity, improve customer satisfaction and strengthen competitive advantage.”
Fawaz H. Zu'bi, chief executive officer at Accelerator Technology Holdings and the former minister of information and communications technology in Jordan, said: “In our rapidly changing world, economic transformation requires a rigorous process of adapting cultures to innovation. As the world’s energy sector undergoes its own transformation, the role of technology, and of those who can catalyze and facilitate the preparation of a highly adaptable environment and trained culture able to deal with it, becomes very important. That’s why the Energy City project in Qatar presents a unique opportunity for the creation of such a model, one that may be replicated in other such developments worldwide. Cisco is an excellent example of a global company that can make an important contribution towards that goal.”
Officially launched on 21 March 2006, Energy City Qatar will become the Middle East’s first integrated business energy centre. Located within the prestigious Lusail development in Doha, it will consolidate a range of industry and marketing services under one roof, attracting investment from significant global players in the hydrocarbon value chain and leading the development of the hydrocarbon industry.
The first phase of Energy City Qatar will be developed at an investment of $1.6 billion. Gulf Finance House, in partnership with Kuwait Investment Co. and Abu Dhabi Investment House recently concluded a $510 million private placement aimed at raising equity for the project.
The proposed clusters that will constitute the first development phase of the project include business centres for oil and gas producers, infrastructure and downstream companies, shipping and trading agencies, service industries, and information providers.
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