The GSMA has appointed Dr. Nasser Marafih, CEO of Qtel Group, as chairman of the board of the GSMA Mobile for Development Foundation.
The Development Foundation promotes the work of the GSMA Mobile for Development fund, which in turn works to increase the benefits of mobile technology in developing countries.
Marafih said there was a “profound synergy” between the aims of the GSMA Foundation and Qtel Group’s vision in developing markets. “We are committed to improving the lives of our customers, and to making a valuable difference in the markets where we operate in Asia, the Middle East and North Africa. We aim at extending the benefits of mobile technology to the underserved communities across our footprint,” he said.
He added that Qtel aimed to improve the lives of its customers in developing markets through projects such as mLearning in Tunisia, mobile money in Indonesia, and initiatives to encourage women to use mobile technology in various countries.
“I look forward to working with the GSMA and its partners to encourage the development of life-enhancing services that meet the wants and needs of underserved people across all emerging markets,” Marafih added.
Anne Bouverot, director general, GSMA, said that Qtel Group had demonstrated strong support of the Development Fund in recent years, particularly by promoting “mWomen” initiatives in Iraq and Indonesia.
GSMA Mobile for Development was previously known as the GSMA Development Fund. The GSMA said that it changed the name of the fund to better reflect the “enabling role” of mobile in developing markets.
Since its creation, the GSMA Development Fund has partnered with 35 mobile operators through various programmes, rolling out 53 services across 30 countries.