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HP plans to open 20 tech hubs for youth in S-E Asia

HP plans to set up 20 tech hubs across South-east Asia by the end of this year to help youth in “underserved communities”, the American technology giant said yesterday.

The hubs will provide technology and entrepreneurship training for students aged 13 and older, and aim to upskill 10,000 youth by the year’s end.

Six tech hubs have been established in Lombok and Jakarta in Indonesia, as well as Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia. The remaining hubs are planned for Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines.

They will each be equipped with 15 to 20 new personal computers and networking support from HP, and will make use of both classroom and online learning.

Students will be taught Microsoft Office, coding, business communications and how to start a small business. Courses in entrepreneurship are adapted from HP Life, a free HP Foundation programme that also offers modules on marketing and business development.

Mr Ng Tian Chong, managing director for Greater Asia at HP, said the company has a responsibility to help prepare young people for the post-Covid-19 reality.

“To help them thrive in the new future of work, we need to build up their confidence, impart them the skills, and give them access to equal opportunities. Through the HP tech hubs, we equip youth in underserved communities with technical and practical knowledge,” he said.

HP added that its overall educational initiatives have benefited more than 1.3 million student and adult learners in Asia-Pacific.

The company is also committed to the goal of eliminating 75 per cent of single-use plastic packaging by 2025.

This builds on its commitment made last year to increase recycled content plastics across its print and personal systems portfolio to 30 per cent by 2025.

The initiatives were announced in HP’s 2019 Sustainable Impact Report released yesterday.

GIVING YOUTH A LEG-UP

To help them thrive in the new future of work, we need to build up their confidence, impart them the skills, and give them access to equal opportunities. Through the HP tech hubs, we equip youth in underserved communities with technical and practical knowledge.

MR NG TIAN CHONG, managing director for Greater Asia at HP, on helping youth thrive at work.

Mr Ng said the company’s sustainable impact strategy drove more than US$1.6 billion (S$2.23 billion) in new sales in its 2019 financial year, an estimated year-on-year increase of 69 per cent.

The report also highlighted HP’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.

Last year, women made up 40 per cent of its global hires, and 44 per cent in Asia, while its board of directors comprised 42 per cent women and 58 per cent minorities.

Reference