Tencent Cloud has announced plans to build a data center in Bahrain.

The Chinese cloud company has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB) that will see the company build a data center in the Kingdom.

Specific details haven’t been shared, but the new facility is due to go live by the end of 2021.

“This is an important milestone in Bahrain's journey to become the MENA region's cloud and data center hub and I commend the EDB for their ceaseless efforts in developing the partnership with Tencent and ensuring that Bahrain is a favored destination for investment,” said H.E. Kamal bin Ahmed Mohammed, Bahrain's Minister of Transportation and Telecommunications.

“Tencent joins leading global cloud giants in setting up in Bahrain which will drive massive growth in data traffic towards MENA. Moreover, the launch of the new data center stands to create a clustering effect as other global providers turn their attention to the increasingly attractive region.”

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Tencent joins AWS in Bahrain

Bahrain World Trade Center
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Outside of China, Tencent has data center locations in the US, Singapore, Russia, Germany, Canada, and India. The agreement marks its first public cloud infrastructure deployed in the MENA region. Last year the company announced it would spend 500 billion yuan ($69.9 billion) over the next five years on data center investment.

“While the local government in Bahrain has been making significant efforts to grow the local IDC industry, Tencent Cloud is excited to collaborate with Bahrain EDB as part of our ongoing efforts to ramp up the global IDC landscape,” said Poshu Yeung, Senior Vice President, Tencent Cloud International. “We will launch all necessary steps to set up a brand-new IDC in Bahrain to provide better coverage all over the Middle East and North African regions along the Belt and Road, fully supporting Bahrain's 'Cloud-First' strategy.”

AWS launched a Bahrain region in 2019, and Huawei has previously built a data center in the Kingdom.

“As a global leader in technology, innovation, and cloud services, the EDB is very proud to be partnering with Tencent to set up their first MENA data center hub in Bahrain,” said H.E. Khalid Humaidan, Chief Executive, Bahrain Economic Development Board. “We are confident that Tencent will be able to leverage on the Kingdom's regional connectivity, local talent, and business-friendly environment to expand their services and reach clients across the region.”