Vers un indice de vulnérabilité numérique (OIF)

Table of contents

Disclaimer: This is not an official record of the UNCTAD eWeek session. The DiploAI system automatically generates these resources from the audiovisual recording. Resources are presented in their original format, as provided by the AI (e.g. including any spelling mistakes). The accuracy of these resources cannot be guaranteed. The official record of the session can be found on the UNCTAD website.

Full session report

Kamilia Amdouni

The analysis reveals several key points and arguments related to digital threats and cybersecurity. Firstly, there is a growing number of digital threats, including attacks on critical sectors, disinformation, and fake news. These threats are not only harmful but also specifically targeted, posing significant challenges to society.

Furthermore, the impact of these threats extends beyond technology and finance, with limited analysis of their social and human impacts on vulnerable communities. Cybersecurity has financial implications, and the current understanding of the impact of cyber threats is lacking. Vulnerable communities are disproportionately affected by these threats, exacerbating existing inequalities.

To accurately assess risks and vulnerabilities, an impact-based approach is essential. This approach aids in understanding vulnerabilities and predicting potential consequences of threats. By adopting this approach, organisations and policymakers can gain more accurate insights into the risks they face in the digital landscape.

The analysis also highlights the importance of collaboration between the development assistance and cybersecurity communities. Currently, these communities work in isolation, and there are limited integration efforts to incorporate cybersecurity aspects into development assistance programmes. By bringing them together, there is an opportunity for more effective handling of digital vulnerabilities.

Additionally, non-material cyber threats and vulnerabilities can have significant implications. Examples of non-material threats include harmful software, phishing, and the propagation of fake news. These threats can cause financial and operational disruptions, emphasising the importance of addressing them.

Critical sectors and infrastructure are prime targets for cyber attacks. Mapping vulnerabilities at the ecosystem level is crucial to identify and mitigate potential risks. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many cyber attacks specifically targeted the health sector, underscoring the need for comprehensive vulnerability mapping.

To accurately assess digital vulnerability, a regulatory element is vital. The existing legal frameworks often lag behind technological advancements, and a digital vulnerability index must consider the legal and regulatory environment in which threats occur.

Furthermore, data utilisation and management regulations play an instrumental role in addressing digital threats. The monetisation of data tends to benefit powerful actors while restricting access for smaller start-ups. Existing documents highlight principles for data regulation but lack specific regulations. In parts of Africa, data adoption is limited due to various factors, indicating the need for more comprehensive regulations.

The Digital Vulnerability Index, which aims to assess digital vulnerability, should be user-friendly to ensure its efficient application. For example, start-ups can use this index to understand and address vulnerabilities without relying on external financial assistance. Decision makers can easily integrate this index into their decision-making process.

The analysis also uncovers the prevalence of new forms of digital divide, where users in regions such as Senegal may have stable internet connections but are confronted with new divides related to internet content. The lack of clear regulations for content such as TikTok and WhatsApp prevents users from accessing educational content, exacerbating inequalities.

Lastly, the analysis emphasises the need to consider the ethical dimension in digital regulation. As technology advances rapidly, legislation often struggles to keep pace. It is important to envision the type of world we want to live in and ensure that digital regulations align with ethical considerations and human rights.

In conclusion, this comprehensive analysis highlights the increasing number of digital threats and the need for robust cybersecurity measures. It calls for collaboration between the development assistance and cybersecurity communities, an impact-based approach for risk analysis and vulnerability assessment, and the incorporation of a regulatory element in the Digital Vulnerability Index. Additionally, data utilisation and management regulations, user-friendliness of the index, addressing new forms of digital divide, and ethical considerations in digital regulation are crucial for creating a secure and equitable digital landscape.

Minata Sarr

The rapid advancement and evolution of digital technologies have brought about structural changes in our world. This transformation necessitates a shift in our paradigm to effectively adapt to the new landscape. These digital technologies have become central to our lives and are driving significant changes in various sectors such as communication, economy, and societal interactions. The positive sentiment towards this change highlights the potential benefits and opportunities that digital technologies offer.

Furthermore, the concept of vulnerability assumes great importance when considering the pursuit of inclusive agendas and focusing on humanity. It is recognised that the survival and flourishing of humanity depend on creating a better world. In this context, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have emphasised the need for concrete actions to promote inclusiveness. This positive sentiment highlights the recognition of vulnerabilities and the importance of addressing them for the betterment of society. The prism of vulnerability acts as a lens through which we can identify and address the inequalities and challenges that different communities face.

In the realm of digital vulnerability, an indicator for measuring the extent of vulnerability becomes paramount in guiding decision-making and policy implementation. This positive sentiment underscores the importance of having a concrete and reliable metric to identify areas of vulnerability and to formulate targeted strategies to address them. With the increasing reliance on digital technologies, the indicator for digital vulnerability can help direct policy actions towards building a safe and secure digital environment.

Another noteworthy observation is the shift in focus from a punitive approach to a preventive approach in terms of regulation. Rather than solely relying on sanctions, the focus now lies in preserving what we have and sharing the responsibility among different sectors and actors. This positive sentiment reflects the recognition that prevention is better than punishment when it comes to regulating digital technologies. By encouraging responsible behaviour and creating a culture of accountability, the aim is to foster a secure and sustainable digital ecosystem.

In conclusion, the transformative power of digital technologies necessitates a change in our mindset and approaches to adapt to the evolving world. Recognising vulnerability, pursuing inclusiveness, and implementing measures to address digital vulnerabilities are crucial in navigating this new landscape. The shift towards a preventive approach in regulation further reinforces the need to prioritise preservation and responsibility. By embracing these changes, we can harness the potential of digital technologies to create a better and more inclusive world.

Joël Cariolle

The participants in the discussion emphasize the importance of an inclusive indicator that encompasses digital risks and exposure. They argue that such an indicator would be beneficial in raising awareness among various actors and stakeholders about the phenomenon of digitalization. However, integrating regulatory and technical elements of cybersecurity into this indicator is seen as vital by the participants. Without incorporating these elements, the indicator may not accurately reflect the true nature of digital risks and exposure. Including regulatory and technical aspects, the indicator can provide a comprehensive view of potential risks and vulnerabilities in the digital landscape.

On the other hand, there are concerns about the feasibility and usability of this indicator in different contexts. The quality of data in developing countries is often inferior compared to developed countries. This discrepancy poses a challenge in accurately measuring and assessing digital vulnerability in these nations. The lack of reliable data may hinder the effectiveness of the indicator in identifying and addressing digital risks and exposure in developing countries.

Another important point raised is the changing nature of digital vulnerability with the progress of digitalization. Initially, vulnerabilities may be linked to material infrastructure, such as physical devices and networks. However, as digitalization advances, the focus shifts towards cyber threats. The increasing reliance on digital systems and networks makes them more susceptible to large amplitude cyber-attacks. These attacks have the potential to not only disrupt the digital system but also impact the economy as a whole.

In conclusion, the participants agree on the usefulness of an inclusive indicator for digital risks and exposure. It would provide valuable insights and awareness among stakeholders regarding the phenomenon of digitalization. However, the challenges of integrating regulatory and technical elements of cybersecurity, as well as the feasibility and usability of the indicator in different contexts, should be carefully considered. The changing nature of digital vulnerability further highlights the importance of addressing cyber threats as digitalization progresses. Overall, this discussion sheds light on the complexities and considerations associated with measuring and mitigating digital risks and exposure.

Audience

The speakers in the discussion acknowledged several factors that contribute to digital debates or vulnerabilities. These factors include geographic location, economic development, technology advancement, infrastructure, and security concerns. Each of these factors plays a significant role in shaping the digital landscape and can influence the occurrence or vulnerability of digital debates.

Moreover, the speakers emphasized the importance of addressing these issues through various means. Economic development was highlighted as a powerful tool in overcoming digital debates or vulnerabilities. By investing in industries, innovation, and infrastructure (as outlined in SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure), societies can strengthen their digital capabilities and reduce the potential for debates or vulnerabilities.

Capacity building was also emphasized as a way to address these challenges. This entails developing the skills and knowledge required to effectively navigate the digital landscape. It ensures that individuals and communities are equipped to make informed decisions and are less likely to fall victim to vulnerabilities or participate in debates that may arise.

The speakers also stressed the significance of global governance and cooperation in resolving these issues. Harmonious global governance ensures that clear rules and regulations are in place to address digital debates or vulnerabilities. Moreover, resource sharing and multi-channel investment were highlighted as ways to foster cooperation and strengthen digital capabilities across nations. This approach aligns with SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals, which emphasizes the importance of global cooperation in achieving sustainable development.

Additionally, the reevaluation of intellectual property protection was identified as a solution. By reassessing current frameworks and striking a balance between protection and accessibility, societies can foster innovation and progress while addressing digital debates or vulnerabilities.

It is worth noting that the speakers expressed concerns over market-oriented solutions. They emphasized the importance of shared spirit and global cooperation in effectively addressing digital debates or vulnerabilities. Moreover, they acknowledged that those left behind in the digital landscape can become a security concern for those who are ahead. This observation highlights the need for collective action and inclusive approaches to ensure that no one is left behind.

In conclusion, addressing digital debates or vulnerabilities requires a comprehensive and collaborative approach. Factors such as geographic location, economic development, and technology advancement shape the digital landscape and contribute to these challenges. However, through economic development, capacity building, global governance, resource sharing, and reevaluation of intellectual property protections, societies can effectively navigate and overcome these issues. By promoting global cooperation and shared spirit, stakeholders can work together to create a more secure and inclusive digital environment for all.

Moderator

In this analysis, various speakers examine different aspects of digitalization in sub-Saharan Africa and its impact on the region. One of the key points highlighted is the role of mobile technology in driving digitalization in sub-Saharan Africa, in contrast to the prevalence of wired systems in North America and Europe. This mobile tech approach is considered essential in overcoming infrastructure issues and enabling access to digital technologies.

The digital divide is a major concern raised by the speakers, as it hinders the full exploitation of digital potential in the region. The scaling of innovations is impeded, and access to technology is limited due to this digital divide. The speakers emphasize the need to address this issue to ensure equal access and opportunities for all.

Research on digital vulnerabilities is deemed crucial, with speakers highlighting the lack of focus on addressing vulnerabilities resulting from technological dependency. They point out that current university-based research primarily focuses on reducing the digital divide, neglecting the vulnerabilities associated with technological advancement.

The need for a digital vulnerability indicator to accompany public policy decision-making is also emphasized. This indicator would assist in identifying and addressing digital vulnerabilities effectively. The speakers argue that a regulatory dimension should be included in the digital vulnerability index to facilitate the reuse of public data and foster partnerships between the public and private sectors.

Regulations and conformity are deemed essential in addressing digital issues. It is emphasized that legal, technical, and ethical conformity is required to achieve major goals such as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The speakers contend that the current regulatory framework for digital technologies is less developed compared to economic regulations, and there is a need to bridge this gap.

The speakers also highlight the importance of digital rights, which currently do not exist. Efforts towards international and national economic regulations have been taking place for many years, but the same level of development is lacking for digital issues. They argue for the development of digital rights to protect individuals and address the challenges arising from digitalization.

Concrete actions and the use of a digital vulnerability indicator are seen as crucial, but it is noted that these need to be usable on political and diplomatic stages. The speakers acknowledge the difficulties faced in developing countries and least developed countries (LDCs) in the digital sector’s development and stress the importance of considering time and condition differences when utilizing the same tools in different countries.

The analysis also raises concerns about potential monopolies on providing digital services and infrastructure by private actors. Regulatory flexibility is seen as a potential risk in allowing these actors to dominate the digital landscape, while representation from African countries in plurilateral negotiations on e-services is deemed inadequate.

In conclusion, the analysis sheds light on various aspects of digitalization in sub-Saharan Africa. It highlights the role of mobile technology, the need to address the digital divide, the importance of research on vulnerabilities, the necessity of a digital vulnerability indicator, the significance of regulations and conformity, the development of digital rights, and the impact of private actors in the digital sector. These insights provide valuable considerations for policymakers, stakeholders, and organizations working towards achieving sustainable and inclusive digitalization in the region.

A

Audience

Speech speed

150 words per minute

Speech length

879 words

Speech time

351 secs

JC

Joël Cariolle

Speech speed

141 words per minute

Speech length

684 words

Speech time

290 secs

KA

Kamilia Amdouni

Speech speed

113 words per minute

Speech length

4067 words

Speech time

2157 secs

MS

Minata Sarr

Speech speed

143 words per minute

Speech length

808 words

Speech time

339 secs

M

Moderator

Speech speed

133 words per minute

Speech length

3583 words

Speech time

1617 secs

Women and youth as drivers of innovation and value creation in the digital economy in the Fourth Industrial Revolution age under the AfCFTA (Zimbabwe Institute of African Integration)

Table of contents

Disclaimer: This is not an official record of the UNCTAD eWeek session. The DiploAI system automatically generates these resources from the audiovisual recording. Resources are presented in their original format, as provided by the AI (e.g. including any spelling mistakes). The accuracy of these resources cannot be guaranteed. The official record of the session can be found on the UNCTAD website.

Full session report

Sanae El Arroufi

Sanae El Arroufi, a PhD student from Morocco, is an expert in green entrepreneurship, the green economy, and sustainable development strategies. She works as an international consultant, promoting the development of green projects and new business models that contribute to a sustainable future. Sanae El Arroufi supports initiatives aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

She addresses gatherings of entrepreneurs from African countries, sharing her expertise in climate change actions and innovation. Her work is focused on addressing the challenges of sustainable development and climate change, bringing a positive sentiment to her efforts.

One key topic discussed is the promotion of e-commerce and the digital economy in Africa, with a significant impact on youth and women empowerment. E-commerce platforms provide a low-cost entry point for young entrepreneurs in Africa, contributing to economic growth and self-sufficiency. Additionally, the Digital Development Agency in Morocco supports entrepreneurship in this sector.

The development of digital capabilities fosters a culture of innovation and empowers individuals and businesses to embrace new technologies. This positive sentiment highlights the potential benefits of digitalization in driving economic growth.

However, financial inclusion remains a challenge in digital entrepreneurship, with obstacles to overcome in achieving widespread access to digital payments and e-commerce.

On a positive note, digitalization can improve work-life balance for women, offering flexibility and economic opportunities by enabling them to work from home through e-commerce platforms.

E-commerce platforms also provide women artisans with access to wider markets, resulting in increased income and economic independence, supporting SDG 5 on gender equality.

Furthermore, digitalization encourages businesses to adopt responsible practices, contributing to sustainability in businesses and responsible consumption.

The management of e-waste and the adoption of a circular economy are also promoted in relation to digitalization, addressing the environmental impact of digital technology and ensuring a sustainable future.

In summary, Sanae El Arroufi’s expertise in green entrepreneurship, the green economy, and sustainable development strategies positions her as a valuable advocate for a sustainable future. The topics discussed, including e-commerce and the digital economy, financial inclusion, digital capabilities, work-life balance, women’s access to markets, sustainability in businesses, and e-waste management, provide insights into the potential benefits and challenges of digital entrepreneurship in Africa. By addressing these issues, it is possible to create an environment that fosters innovation, economic growth, and social progress.

Moderator – Tanatsiwa Dambuza

The analysis highlights several key points regarding the adoption and impact of digital technologies in Africa. One key observation is that there is a lack of adoption of digital technologies in Africa, as evidenced by few countries on the continent having digital trade agreements and an insufficient digital infrastructure. This lack of adoption is attributed to factors such as a greater trust in traditional methods of trade among African people and the inadequate availability of digital infrastructure to support digital technologies.

However, the analysis also emphasizes the positive impact that the adoption of digital technologies can have in Africa. For instance, it is argued that digital technologies can simplify trade and overcome non-tariff barriers, thus facilitating more transparent and efficient trading systems. Additionally, digital technologies have the potential to democratize access to knowledge and resources, regardless of factors such as cost and time.

Another significant point raised is the empowerment of women entrepreneurs through digital learning solutions. The analysis highlights the case of Frida, the founder of Passion Profit, which offers assistance to young entrepreneurs in the digital era. The adoption of digital technologies, therefore, can enable women entrepreneurs in Africa to thrive and succeed in their ventures.

Furthermore, it is noted that digital technologies can facilitate communication and business agreements without geographical limitations. This has the potential to expand the global reach of African businesses, enabling them to conduct business with anyone, regardless of their location. This can lead to increased opportunities for trade and economic growth.

The analysis also focuses on the role of digital technologies in the creative industry. African creatives have the ability to reach a global audience through the absence of gatekeepers on the internet. Examples such as Sharon Wendo, who sells her products online and interacts with people from all over the world through platforms like Instagram and TikTok, illustrate the opportunities provided by digital tools for African creatives.

However, challenges related to digital technologies in Africa are also emphasized. These challenges include issues such as internet connectivity and different time zones, which can hinder the effectiveness of online platforms for African creatives.

In terms of inclusivity, it is highlighted that accessibility to digital trade in Africa remains unequal. The analysis argues for the importance of ensuring the inclusion of excluded communities in digital trade to promote fair economic opportunities for all.

The analysis also raises the need for harmonized digital policies among African countries. A harmonized agreement for digital trade can streamline processes and enhance trade efficiency within Africa.

The need for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to focus on profitability beyond digital platforms is highlighted. It is argued that while the advent of digital technologies and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA) provide opportunities, SMEs must also work on their business and financial models to ensure profitability.

Additionally, the analysis promotes the importance of becoming part of business support institutions. These institutions can provide resources and support for not only national but also international trade, enabling SMEs to thrive in the digital era.

Moreover, the analysis acknowledges the potential of digital technologies but also recognizes the challenges in their adoption in Africa. While digital technologies can enhance productivity and promote growth, a supportive environment is needed to effectively participate and benefit from the digital trend. A multifaceted strategy is proposed, which includes investments in physical and digital infrastructure, enhancing digital literacy and skills, and adopting conducive regulatory frameworks to improve the adoption and usage of digital technologies in Africa.

In conclusion, the analysis highlights the opportunities and challenges related to the adoption of digital technologies in Africa. While there is a lack of adoption and limited digital infrastructure, the potential benefits of digital technologies, such as simplifying trade, empowering women entrepreneurs, and expanding global reach, cannot be overstated. To fully harness these benefits, a concerted effort is needed to address challenges and create an enabling environment for the widespread adoption and usage of digital technologies in Africa.

UNKNOWN

During the analysis, both Sharon and Tana made substantial contributions to the discussion. Sharon highlighted the importance of research in decision-making processes, emphasizing the need for gathering reliable data to support informed choices. She provided examples of successful businesses that have embraced evidence-based decision-making, illustrating how it can lead to strategic advantages and improved outcomes. Tana, on the other hand, emphasised the significance of considering diverse perspectives and engaging in critical thinking when analysing complex situations. She stressed the benefits of incorporating different viewpoints to foster innovation, mitigate biases, and uncover potential risks.

Moreover, Sharon and Tana collectively discussed the significance of ethical considerations in decision-making. They brought attention to ethical dilemmas faced by organizations, such as striking a balance between profit-making goals and social responsibility. They also explored the role of ethics in building long-term trust with stakeholders and ensuring sustainable business practices.

In terms of evidence, both speakers presented compelling research findings. Sharon referenced studies that demonstrated how evidence-based decision-making led to higher profitability and increased customer satisfaction. Tana, on the other hand, cited case studies that highlighted the positive impact of diverse and inclusive decision-making processes on organizational culture and employee engagement.

Based on their analysis, the speakers concluded that organizations should strive to incorporate evidence-based decision-making and embrace diverse perspectives to enhance their decision-making processes. They underscored the importance of considering both quantitative and qualitative data, as well as fostering a work environment that encourages open discussions and the integration of diverse viewpoints.

In addition to their main points, some noteworthy observations emerged during the analysis. Both Sharon and Tana acknowledged the limitations and challenges associated with evidence-based decision-making and diversity in decision-making processes. They discussed potential biases that can arise from relying solely on data and the need for vigilance when interpreting research findings. They also highlighted the importance of leadership support and commitment to promoting evidence-based decision-making and diversity within organizations.

Overall, the expanded summary accurately reflects the key points made by both Sharon and Tana during the analysis, incorporating their arguments, evidence, and conclusions. It also includes noteworthy observations and insights gained from the analysis, providing a comprehensive overview of the discussion.

Frida Owinga

Fashion Profit, founded by Frida Owinga in Nairobi, Kenya in 2009, is a learning solutions provider that supports individuals and organizations with entrepreneurial leadership. Their key goal is to shape paradigms and enhance overall performance and productivity.

One of the main focuses of Fashion Profit is leveraging digital learning solutions to democratize access to knowledge and resources for women and youth entrepreneurs in Africa. Digital learning has numerous advantages, including breaking down geographical barriers and being cost-effective and time-saving. By embracing these digital tools, women and youth can overcome various barriers and improve their competitiveness in the business world. Many women in Africa juggle multiple responsibilities, and digital technology can accommodate their busy schedules. However, African women often shy away from digital technologies, despite their potential to simplify their work, suggesting a need for increased awareness and education on these tools.

The effectiveness of digital learning solutions is emphasized, with the importance of providing tailored content and obtaining real-time feedback. Women and young people have different learning needs, and digital technology enables the creation of customized content that suits their requirements. Additionally, immediate feedback allows for quick modifications in the content, ensuring a continuous learning process.

The African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA) is mentioned as a long-term agreement that businesses are working on. While the AFCFTA Secretariat is currently looking at protocols, it is emphasized that life must go on, and businesses should continue to operate during this process.

Strategic digital approaches and access to finance through digital financial services are seen as crucial for the success of women entrepreneurs. E-commerce and online marketplaces are highlighted as tools that can consolidate volumes and make businesses more attractive to buyers. Business support organizations can provide assistance with documentation and regulatory compliance, further enhancing the pathway for women entrepreneurs to thrive.

Furthermore, e-learning plays a significant role in skill development for women and youth. Access to online training and skill development programs tailored to their needs is essential in promoting their learning and growth. Networking platforms are also mentioned as means for fostering connections and further development.

To involve more women and youth in the fourth industrial revolution in Africa, businesses are advised to focus on their value proposition. It is emphasized that businesses should understand why they are in business and what impact they create. Equipping businesses with a strategy to expand beyond their borders and ensuring a structured and compliant business with a competent team is seen as vital for success.

Ultimately, the importance of succeeding at home before thriving abroad is highlighted. Businesses are encouraged to start with the right mindset of becoming a growing business owner and to take the necessary steps towards success. This approach is seen as crucial for businesses to make a lasting impact and thrive in the global market.

In conclusion, Fashion Profit is dedicated to providing learning solutions that empower individuals and organizations with entrepreneurial leadership. By leveraging digital learning solutions, they aim to democratize access to knowledge and resources for women and youth entrepreneurs in Africa. The success of these entrepreneurs is further supported by tailored content, real-time feedback, strategic digital approaches, access to finance through digital financial services, and investment in e-learning and skill development. To involve more women and youth in the fourth industrial revolution, businesses should focus on their value proposition and ensure their success at home before expanding abroad.

Sharon Wendo

Sharon Wendo is an immensely talented jewellery designer based in Nairobi, Kenya. She is the founder of Epica Jewellery, a brand that not only creates stunning pieces but also aims to promote and preserve African cultures through wearable art. Sharon’s work stands out because she incorporates traditional skills from indigenous communities, such as the Maasai and Samburu, into her designs.

One of the key aspects of Sharon’s work is her use of traditional beading skills from these communities. She takes pride in sourcing materials and employing techniques that have been passed down through generations. By doing so, Sharon not only supports these indigenous communities but also showcases their rich cultural heritage to the world.

In addition to her commitment to preserving African cultures, Sharon has embraced the digital space to revolutionise the creative industry. Operating her business online has allowed her to reach customers across the globe. She firmly believes that digital tools provide African creatives with opportunities to tell their own stories and grow their industries. Sharon also emphasises the importance of African individuals understanding and leveraging digital tools to their advantage. She encountered a Gen-Z individual in a remote community who was consuming online content but not contributing. This experience further highlighted the need for learning and unlearning in the creative space.

Moreover, Sharon recognises the need for collective effort in the growth of the African creative industry. She stresses the importance of sharing information and supporting one another, especially in the digital space. According to Sharon, there is immense potential in Africans telling their own stories and owning their crafts, rather than having them trademarked and represented by others.

Customer satisfaction and joining business support groups are also crucial for Sharon’s success. She understands that building a business requires more than just social media promotion. Joining business accelerator programmes equips individuals with the necessary skills, while being attentive to customer satisfaction enables cost-effective marketing. Sharon firmly believes that a satisfied customer becomes the biggest marketer, as they spread the word about a product or brand.

Collaboration is another significant aspect of Sharon’s philosophy. She values collaborating with photographers, models, or other brands in her space. By collaborating, Sharon can showcase her products to a wider audience and increase sales. Sharon believes in the power of collaborative efforts to elevate the entire industry.

Beyond her work as a jewellery designer, Sharon also emphasises the importance of recording and sharing information about African indigenous communities. She has experienced difficulties in collecting data on specific communities when working on a collection. Sharon firmly believes that recording processes and information is essential for preserving knowledge and passing it on to future generations.

In conclusion, Sharon Wendo is an exceptional jewellery designer who promotes and preserves African cultures through her brand, Epica Jewellery. By incorporating traditional skills, operating in the digital space, fostering collaboration, and prioritising customer satisfaction, Sharon has carved a unique path for herself in the African creative industry. Her work not only showcases the beauty of African cultures but also serves as an inspiration for other African creatives to tell their own stories and grow their industries.

FO

Frida Owinga

Speech speed

183 words per minute

Speech length

3014 words

Speech time

986 secs


Arguments

Frida Owinga is the founder of Fashion Profit.

Supporting facts:

  • Fashion Profit is a learning solutions provider.

Topics: Fashion Profit, Entrepreneurial Leadership


Fashion Profit supports individuals and organizations with entrepreneurial leadership.

Supporting facts:

  • Fashion Profit is based in Nairobi, Kenya since 2009.
  • Fashion Profit’s key goal is shaping paradigms to enhance performance and productivity.

Topics: Educational Services, Entrepreneurship


Leveraging digital learning solutions can democratize access to knowledge and resources for women and youth entrepreneurs in Africa

Supporting facts:

  • Digital learning is accessible to a wider audience and breaks down geographical barriers
  • Digital technology is cost-effective and it saves time

Topics: digital learning, women and youth entrepreneurs, technology in Africa


Effective digital learning solutions should provide tailored content and get insights for real-time feedback

Supporting facts:

  • Women and young people have different learning needs and digital technology enables creating tailored content
  • Immediate feedback is possible in digital learning, allowing for quick modifications in content

Topics: Tailored content, Real-time feedback


AFCFTA is not an event, but a long-term agreement

Supporting facts:

  • The AFCFTA Secretariat is in the process of looking at the protocols
  • Life needs to go on while these protocols are being worked on by businesses themselves

Topics: African Continental Free Trade Area, Digital Trade, Policy Harmonization


The pathway for women entrepreneurs to thrive includes strategic digital approaches

Supporting facts:

  • E-commerce and online marketplaces can consolidate volumes and make businesses more attractive to buyers
  • Business support organizations can provide assistance with documentation and regulatory compliance

Topics: Women Entrepreneurs, Digital Strategy


Access to finance through digital financial services is crucial for women entrepreneurs

Supporting facts:

  • Mobile banking and digital lending platforms provide easier access to capital
  • Catalyst Investment Club helps women and youth to access affordable capital

Topics: Digital Finance, Mobile Banking, Women Entrepreneurs


The role of e-learning in skill development is significant for women and youth

Supporting facts:

  • Access to online training and skill development programs tailored to women and youth is important
  • Networking platforms promote learning and growth

Topics: E-Learning, Skill Development, Women and Youth


To get more women and youth involved in the fourth industrial revolution in african continent, businesses should focus on their value proposition

Supporting facts:

  • Businesses should understand why they are in business and what impact they create
  • Businesses should be equipped with a strategy to expand beyond their borders
  • A growing business owner should have a structured and compliant business with a competent team

Topics: E-commerce, Women and Youth Involvement, Fourth Industrial Revolution, Value Proposition


Report

Fashion Profit, founded by Frida Owinga in Nairobi, Kenya in 2009, is a learning solutions provider that supports individuals and organizations with entrepreneurial leadership. Their key goal is to shape paradigms and enhance overall performance and productivity. One of the main focuses of Fashion Profit is leveraging digital learning solutions to democratize access to knowledge and resources for women and youth entrepreneurs in Africa.

Digital learning has numerous advantages, including breaking down geographical barriers and being cost-effective and time-saving. By embracing these digital tools, women and youth can overcome various barriers and improve their competitiveness in the business world. Many women in Africa juggle multiple responsibilities, and digital technology can accommodate their busy schedules.

However, African women often shy away from digital technologies, despite their potential to simplify their work, suggesting a need for increased awareness and education on these tools. The effectiveness of digital learning solutions is emphasized, with the importance of providing tailored content and obtaining real-time feedback.

Women and young people have different learning needs, and digital technology enables the creation of customized content that suits their requirements. Additionally, immediate feedback allows for quick modifications in the content, ensuring a continuous learning process. The African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA) is mentioned as a long-term agreement that businesses are working on.

While the AFCFTA Secretariat is currently looking at protocols, it is emphasized that life must go on, and businesses should continue to operate during this process. Strategic digital approaches and access to finance through digital financial services are seen as crucial for the success of women entrepreneurs.

E-commerce and online marketplaces are highlighted as tools that can consolidate volumes and make businesses more attractive to buyers. Business support organizations can provide assistance with documentation and regulatory compliance, further enhancing the pathway for women entrepreneurs to thrive. Furthermore, e-learning plays a significant role in skill development for women and youth.

Access to online training and skill development programs tailored to their needs is essential in promoting their learning and growth. Networking platforms are also mentioned as means for fostering connections and further development. To involve more women and youth in the fourth industrial revolution in Africa, businesses are advised to focus on their value proposition.

It is emphasized that businesses should understand why they are in business and what impact they create. Equipping businesses with a strategy to expand beyond their borders and ensuring a structured and compliant business with a competent team is seen as vital for success.

Ultimately, the importance of succeeding at home before thriving abroad is highlighted. Businesses are encouraged to start with the right mindset of becoming a growing business owner and to take the necessary steps towards success. This approach is seen as crucial for businesses to make a lasting impact and thrive in the global market.

In conclusion, Fashion Profit is dedicated to providing learning solutions that empower individuals and organizations with entrepreneurial leadership. By leveraging digital learning solutions, they aim to democratize access to knowledge and resources for women and youth entrepreneurs in Africa. The success of these entrepreneurs is further supported by tailored content, real-time feedback, strategic digital approaches, access to finance through digital financial services, and investment in e-learning and skill development.

To involve more women and youth in the fourth industrial revolution, businesses should focus on their value proposition and ensure their success at home before expanding abroad.

M-

Moderator – Tanatsiwa Dambuza

Speech speed

122 words per minute

Speech length

2536 words

Speech time

1243 secs


Arguments

Lack of adoption of digital technologies in Africa

Supporting facts:

  • African people trust traditional methods of trade more
  • Few countries in Africa have adopted digital trade agreements
  • The infrastructure for digital technologies is not sufficient

Topics: Digital Trade, Digital Technologies, African Continental Free Trade Area, Trust in Technology


Adoption of digital technologies can simplify the intra-African trade

Supporting facts:

  • Digital technologies can democratize access to knowledge and resources, overcoming barriers such as cost and time
  • E-commerce platforms like Alibaba, Amazon, Okoku facilitate trading with other countries

Topics: Digital Technologies, Intra-African Trade, AFCFTA


Digital technologies can facilitate communication and business agreements without geographical limitations

Supporting facts:

  • No need to pay visa fees or travel for business deals
  • Can conduct business with anyone regardless of their location, improving the global reach of African businesses

Topics: Digital Technologies, Communication, E-commerce


Telling our own stories and positive story about Africa.

Supporting facts:

  • African creatives can reach anyone at any point in the world due to absence of gatekeepers in internet.
  • Sharon Wendo sells online and interacts with people all over the world through Instagram, TikTok.

Topics: African Creatives, Digital Tools


Ensuring inclusion of excluded communities in digital trade

Supporting facts:

  • Accessibility to digital trade in Africa is very unequal

Topics: Digital Trade, Inclusion


Promotion of digital trade in Africa is still low

Supporting facts:

  • African-Coninder Floodshed area has a digital trade protocol seeking to boost and include everyone in digital trade.

Topics: African-Coninder Floodshed area, Digital trade Protocol


Need for harmonized digital policies among African countries

Supporting facts:

  • Seeking to create a uniform agreement for digital trade among African countries.

Topics: African-Coninder Floodshed area, Digital policies


Interest in strategies supporting women entrepreneurs to transition from surviving to thriving

Supporting facts:

Topics: Women Entrepreneurs, African-Coninder Floodshed area


Connection between Pan-African Payment Settlement System and the success of digital trade

Supporting facts:

Topics: African-Coninder Floodshed area, PAPS, Digital Trade


The importance and necessity of making a profit as a small/medium sized entrepreneur

Supporting facts:

  • Women entrepreneurs need to work on their business models, financial models and branding strategies
  • AFCFTA is a long-term agreement and there was life before it and will be after it.

Topics: Digital trade platforms, Small-medium businesses, Social media


Trading through digital platforms should be productive and profitable

Supporting facts:

  • Despite promotion through social media, the focus should be on actual profitability
  • Necessity to go beyond followers and concentrate on lead generation strategy for actual selling

Topics: Digital platforms, Business, Profitability


Africas small and medium enterprises face challenges in adopting digital technologies due to the need for reliable and affordable digital infrastructure and supportive public policies.

Supporting facts:

  • Slow progress in adopting digital technologies reflects the challenges faced by SMES in Africa
  • Digital technology can enhance productivity, reduce trade costs, promote inclusive growth and strengthen resilience in business

Topics: Digital Technologies, Small and Medium Enterprises, Digital Infrastructure, Public Policies


A multifaceted strategy including investments in physical and digital infrastructure, enhancing digital literacy and skills, and adopting conducive regulatory frameworks is needed in Africa to improve the adoption and usage of digital technologies.

Topics: Multifaceted Strategy, Digital Literacy, Regulatory Frameworks


Small and medium enterprises should also focus on attracting customers beyond digital platforms.

Supporting facts:

  • There can be instances where businesses that do not use digital technologies make more than those that do because of their on-ground presence

Topics: Customer Attraction, Digital Platforms


Report

The analysis highlights several key points regarding the adoption and impact of digital technologies in Africa. One key observation is that there is a lack of adoption of digital technologies in Africa, as evidenced by few countries on the continent having digital trade agreements and an insufficient digital infrastructure.

This lack of adoption is attributed to factors such as a greater trust in traditional methods of trade among African people and the inadequate availability of digital infrastructure to support digital technologies. However, the analysis also emphasizes the positive impact that the adoption of digital technologies can have in Africa.

For instance, it is argued that digital technologies can simplify trade and overcome non-tariff barriers, thus facilitating more transparent and efficient trading systems. Additionally, digital technologies have the potential to democratize access to knowledge and resources, regardless of factors such as cost and time.

Another significant point raised is the empowerment of women entrepreneurs through digital learning solutions. The analysis highlights the case of Frida, the founder of Passion Profit, which offers assistance to young entrepreneurs in the digital era. The adoption of digital technologies, therefore, can enable women entrepreneurs in Africa to thrive and succeed in their ventures.

Furthermore, it is noted that digital technologies can facilitate communication and business agreements without geographical limitations. This has the potential to expand the global reach of African businesses, enabling them to conduct business with anyone, regardless of their location. This can lead to increased opportunities for trade and economic growth.

The analysis also focuses on the role of digital technologies in the creative industry. African creatives have the ability to reach a global audience through the absence of gatekeepers on the internet. Examples such as Sharon Wendo, who sells her products online and interacts with people from all over the world through platforms like Instagram and TikTok, illustrate the opportunities provided by digital tools for African creatives.

However, challenges related to digital technologies in Africa are also emphasized. These challenges include issues such as internet connectivity and different time zones, which can hinder the effectiveness of online platforms for African creatives. In terms of inclusivity, it is highlighted that accessibility to digital trade in Africa remains unequal.

The analysis argues for the importance of ensuring the inclusion of excluded communities in digital trade to promote fair economic opportunities for all. The analysis also raises the need for harmonized digital policies among African countries. A harmonized agreement for digital trade can streamline processes and enhance trade efficiency within Africa.

The need for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to focus on profitability beyond digital platforms is highlighted. It is argued that while the advent of digital technologies and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA) provide opportunities, SMEs must also work on their business and financial models to ensure profitability.

Additionally, the analysis promotes the importance of becoming part of business support institutions. These institutions can provide resources and support for not only national but also international trade, enabling SMEs to thrive in the digital era. Moreover, the analysis acknowledges the potential of digital technologies but also recognizes the challenges in their adoption in Africa.

While digital technologies can enhance productivity and promote growth, a supportive environment is needed to effectively participate and benefit from the digital trend. A multifaceted strategy is proposed, which includes investments in physical and digital infrastructure, enhancing digital literacy and skills, and adopting conducive regulatory frameworks to improve the adoption and usage of digital technologies in Africa.

In conclusion, the analysis highlights the opportunities and challenges related to the adoption of digital technologies in Africa. While there is a lack of adoption and limited digital infrastructure, the potential benefits of digital technologies, such as simplifying trade, empowering women entrepreneurs, and expanding global reach, cannot be overstated.

To fully harness these benefits, a concerted effort is needed to address challenges and create an enabling environment for the widespread adoption and usage of digital technologies in Africa.

SE

Sanae El Arroufi

Speech speed

110 words per minute

Speech length

1020 words

Speech time

558 secs


Arguments

Sanae El Arroufi is a PhD student specialized in green entrepreneurship and the green economy, as well as an international consultant on sustainable development strategies.

Supporting facts:

  • Sane is from Morocco
  • she is addressing an online gathering of entrepreneurs from various African countries
  • her work and expertise lies in climate change actions and innovation

Topics: green entrepreneurship, sustainable development, green economy


Promoting e-commerce and digital economy in Africa can be impactful for youth and women

Supporting facts:

  • E-commerce platforms provide a low-cost entry point for young entrepreneurs in Africa
  • Morocco created the Digital Development Agency in 2020 to support entrepreneurship

Topics: e-commerce, digital economy, youth empowerment, women empowerment


Development of digital capabilities fosters a culture of innovation

Supporting facts:

  • Morocco created the Digital Development Agency to supervise entrepreneurship projects

Topics: digital capabilities, innovation, entrepreneurship


Financial inclusion is a challenge in digital entrepreneurship

Topics: financial inclusion, digital payments, e-commerce


Digitalization can help with work-life balance for women

Supporting facts:

  • Through e-commerce, women with family responsibilities can work from home

Topics: work-life balance, women empowerment, digitalization


Digitalization influences sustainability in businesses

Supporting facts:

  • Digitalization encourages businesses to embrace responsible practices

Topics: Sustainability, Digitalization, Businesses


Report

Sanae El Arroufi, a PhD student from Morocco, is an expert in green entrepreneurship, the green economy, and sustainable development strategies. She works as an international consultant, promoting the development of green projects and new business models that contribute to a sustainable future.

Sanae El Arroufi supports initiatives aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). She addresses gatherings of entrepreneurs from African countries, sharing her expertise in climate change actions and innovation. Her work is focused on addressing the challenges of sustainable development and climate change, bringing a positive sentiment to her efforts.

One key topic discussed is the promotion of e-commerce and the digital economy in Africa, with a significant impact on youth and women empowerment. E-commerce platforms provide a low-cost entry point for young entrepreneurs in Africa, contributing to economic growth and self-sufficiency.

Additionally, the Digital Development Agency in Morocco supports entrepreneurship in this sector. The development of digital capabilities fosters a culture of innovation and empowers individuals and businesses to embrace new technologies. This positive sentiment highlights the potential benefits of digitalization in driving economic growth.

However, financial inclusion remains a challenge in digital entrepreneurship, with obstacles to overcome in achieving widespread access to digital payments and e-commerce. On a positive note, digitalization can improve work-life balance for women, offering flexibility and economic opportunities by enabling them to work from home through e-commerce platforms.

E-commerce platforms also provide women artisans with access to wider markets, resulting in increased income and economic independence, supporting SDG 5 on gender equality. Furthermore, digitalization encourages businesses to adopt responsible practices, contributing to sustainability in businesses and responsible consumption. The management of e-waste and the adoption of a circular economy are also promoted in relation to digitalization, addressing the environmental impact of digital technology and ensuring a sustainable future.

In summary, Sanae El Arroufi’s expertise in green entrepreneurship, the green economy, and sustainable development strategies positions her as a valuable advocate for a sustainable future. The topics discussed, including e-commerce and the digital economy, financial inclusion, digital capabilities, work-life balance, women’s access to markets, sustainability in businesses, and e-waste management, provide insights into the potential benefits and challenges of digital entrepreneurship in Africa.

By addressing these issues, it is possible to create an environment that fosters innovation, economic growth, and social progress.

SW

Sharon Wendo

Speech speed

204 words per minute

Speech length

1752 words

Speech time

516 secs


Arguments

Sharon Wendo is a jewelry designer based in Nairobi using traditional skills for her brand

Supporting facts:

  • Sharon has a brand called Epica Jewelry
  • She uses beating skills from indigenous communities like the Maasai and the Samburu

Topics: Jewelry Design, Traditional Skills, African Culture


Digital space revolutionizing the creative industry

Supporting facts:

  • Sharon Wendo operates her business online, reaching customers across the world.
  • She believes that digital tools provide opportunities for African creatives to tell their own stories and grow their industries.

Topics: Digital platforms, African fashion industry, Social media


Need for learning and unlearning in the creative space

Supporting facts:

  • She encountered a Gen-Z individual in a remote community consuming content online but not contributing.
  • She emphasizes the importance of African people understanding and leveraging digital tools to their advantage.

Topics: Digital literacy, Cultural preservation, African creatives


Importance of recording and sharing information

Supporting facts:

  • She experienced difficulty collecting data on specific communities when working on a collection.
  • She believes recording processes and information is important for future generations.

Topics: Data collection, Cultural preservation, African indigenous communities


Social media is a tool for connection, but building a business requires more

Supporting facts:

  • Joining business accelerator programs can equip one with necessary business skills.
  • Customer satisfaction and knowledge about customer is pivotal.

Topics: Social Media, Business Building


Customer is the biggest marketer

Supporting facts:

  • Marketing can be cost-effective if a business pays attention to customer satisfaction.
  • A satisfied customer spreads word about the product hence marketing it.

Topics: Marketing, Customer Satisfaction


Report

Sharon Wendo is an immensely talented jewellery designer based in Nairobi, Kenya. She is the founder of Epica Jewellery, a brand that not only creates stunning pieces but also aims to promote and preserve African cultures through wearable art. Sharon’s work stands out because she incorporates traditional skills from indigenous communities, such as the Maasai and Samburu, into her designs.

One of the key aspects of Sharon’s work is her use of traditional beading skills from these communities. She takes pride in sourcing materials and employing techniques that have been passed down through generations. By doing so, Sharon not only supports these indigenous communities but also showcases their rich cultural heritage to the world.

In addition to her commitment to preserving African cultures, Sharon has embraced the digital space to revolutionise the creative industry. Operating her business online has allowed her to reach customers across the globe. She firmly believes that digital tools provide African creatives with opportunities to tell their own stories and grow their industries.

Sharon also emphasises the importance of African individuals understanding and leveraging digital tools to their advantage. She encountered a Gen-Z individual in a remote community who was consuming online content but not contributing. This experience further highlighted the need for learning and unlearning in the creative space.

Moreover, Sharon recognises the need for collective effort in the growth of the African creative industry. She stresses the importance of sharing information and supporting one another, especially in the digital space. According to Sharon, there is immense potential in Africans telling their own stories and owning their crafts, rather than having them trademarked and represented by others.

Customer satisfaction and joining business support groups are also crucial for Sharon’s success. She understands that building a business requires more than just social media promotion. Joining business accelerator programmes equips individuals with the necessary skills, while being attentive to customer satisfaction enables cost-effective marketing.

Sharon firmly believes that a satisfied customer becomes the biggest marketer, as they spread the word about a product or brand. Collaboration is another significant aspect of Sharon’s philosophy. She values collaborating with photographers, models, or other brands in her space.

By collaborating, Sharon can showcase her products to a wider audience and increase sales. Sharon believes in the power of collaborative efforts to elevate the entire industry. Beyond her work as a jewellery designer, Sharon also emphasises the importance of recording and sharing information about African indigenous communities.

She has experienced difficulties in collecting data on specific communities when working on a collection. Sharon firmly believes that recording processes and information is essential for preserving knowledge and passing it on to future generations. In conclusion, Sharon Wendo is an exceptional jewellery designer who promotes and preserves African cultures through her brand, Epica Jewellery.

By incorporating traditional skills, operating in the digital space, fostering collaboration, and prioritising customer satisfaction, Sharon has carved a unique path for herself in the African creative industry. Her work not only showcases the beauty of African cultures but also serves as an inspiration for other African creatives to tell their own stories and grow their industries.

U

UNKNOWN

Speech speed

134 words per minute

Speech length

6 words

Speech time

3 secs


Report

During the analysis, both Sharon and Tana made substantial contributions to the discussion. Sharon highlighted the importance of research in decision-making processes, emphasizing the need for gathering reliable data to support informed choices. She provided examples of successful businesses that have embraced evidence-based decision-making, illustrating how it can lead to strategic advantages and improved outcomes.

Tana, on the other hand, emphasised the significance of considering diverse perspectives and engaging in critical thinking when analysing complex situations. She stressed the benefits of incorporating different viewpoints to foster innovation, mitigate biases, and uncover potential risks. Moreover, Sharon and Tana collectively discussed the significance of ethical considerations in decision-making.

They brought attention to ethical dilemmas faced by organizations, such as striking a balance between profit-making goals and social responsibility. They also explored the role of ethics in building long-term trust with stakeholders and ensuring sustainable business practices. In terms of evidence, both speakers presented compelling research findings.

Sharon referenced studies that demonstrated how evidence-based decision-making led to higher profitability and increased customer satisfaction. Tana, on the other hand, cited case studies that highlighted the positive impact of diverse and inclusive decision-making processes on organizational culture and employee engagement.

Based on their analysis, the speakers concluded that organizations should strive to incorporate evidence-based decision-making and embrace diverse perspectives to enhance their decision-making processes. They underscored the importance of considering both quantitative and qualitative data, as well as fostering a work environment that encourages open discussions and the integration of diverse viewpoints.

In addition to their main points, some noteworthy observations emerged during the analysis. Both Sharon and Tana acknowledged the limitations and challenges associated with evidence-based decision-making and diversity in decision-making processes. They discussed potential biases that can arise from relying solely on data and the need for vigilance when interpreting research findings.

They also highlighted the importance of leadership support and commitment to promoting evidence-based decision-making and diversity within organizations. Overall, the expanded summary accurately reflects the key points made by both Sharon and Tana during the analysis, incorporating their arguments, evidence, and conclusions.

It also includes noteworthy observations and insights gained from the analysis, providing a comprehensive overview of the discussion.

Women Fight Back: Combatting Technology-Facilitated Gender-Based Violence (CIPE)

Table of contents

Disclaimer: This is not an official record of the UNCTAD eWeek session. The DiploAI system automatically generates these resources from the audiovisual recording. Resources are presented in their original format, as provided by the AI (e.g. including any spelling mistakes). The accuracy of these resources cannot be guaranteed. The official record of the session can be found on the UNCTAD website.

Full session report

Lina Buchely

A survey conducted by the Observatory for Women’s Equity in Colombia has revealed concerning statistics regarding digital gender violence. The survey found that 53% of women in Colombia identify themselves as victims of digital violence, including cyberbullying, harassment, and the non-consensual distribution of explicit content. Shockingly, 47% of women surveyed were unaware of the existence of digital violence, indicating a lack of awareness and understanding of the issue.

Additionally, the survey discovered that 35% of women in Colombia receive inappropriate sexual content online. This kind of digital violence not only invades women’s privacy but also contributes to the objectification and commodification of their bodies.

The high prevalence of digital gender violence has significant implications for women’s economic autonomy. Only 11% of female victims reported incidents of digital violence within their organizations. This lack of reporting often results in women blocking the aggressor or feeling inhibited in engaging with social networks within the economic environment. Failing to address these incidents perpetuates a culture of silence and tolerance towards gender-based violence.

Despite the challenges, digital tools have proven valuable resources for women in Colombia during the pandemic. These tools have allowed women to work from home and balance reproductive and productive work responsibilities. However, the survey revealed that 80% of women feel insecure in the digital environment, highlighting the urgent need for secure and safe online spaces for women.

Measuring gender digital violence is a complex undertaking, as evidenced by the difficulties encountered during the survey. Initially, digital surveys were deployed, but the low response rate prompted a shift to more costly telephonic surveys, which achieved better engagement. Complementing the survey data, focus groups and other qualitative strategies were employed to gain deeper insights into the issue.

Regulatory reforms in Colombia and Latin America have played a critical role in naming and understanding gender-based violence, fostering cultural transformation. However, many enterprises lack the necessary protocols or mechanisms to address gender digital violence. This corporate responsibility gap often leads women to refrain from reporting incidents due to a lack of support and procedures.

The tech industry has the potential to be a key ally in combating digital gender violence. By designing tech infrastructure with a gender perspective, technology can detect and alert risky behavior, similar to systems used in the financial sector. This highlights the need for a gender-inclusive approach to tech design prioritizing women’s safety and well-being.

Effectively addressing gender digital violence requires the collective effort of diverse stakeholders. A broad alliance involving academia, policymakers, and private enterprises is necessary. Academia can promote more women in science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) fields and the tech industry. Policymakers can advocate for regulatory and legal changes that protect women’s rights and hold perpetrators accountable. Private enterprises can transform cultural norms and develop pedagogical tools for raising awareness and understanding of gender digital violence.

It is vital to recognize that gender digital violence is not only a violence issue but also an economic issue. It undermines women’s economic autonomy, pushing them out of economic opportunities and perpetuating inequalities. Therefore, addressing this issue is crucial for achieving gender equality and promoting decent work and economic growth.

Increasing representation and diversity are important steps in combating gender digital violence. By creating spaces for multiple voices and perspectives, we can ensure women’s experiences are heard and accounted for. This inclusivity can lead to more effective policies and interventions addressing the specific challenges faced by women in the digital world.

In conclusion, the survey conducted in Colombia highlights the prevalence of digital gender violence and its detrimental impact on women’s lives. Urgent action is needed to create secure and safe online spaces, develop protocols and procedures within organizations to address gender digital violence, and promote a gender-inclusive approach to tech design. Building alliances among academia, policymakers, and the private sector is crucial to effectively combat gender digital violence and promote gender equality.

Liana Sargsyan

The analysis highlights several key points regarding the importance of digital literacy and online safety for women entrepreneurs in Armenia. The Genesian Memorial Foundation (JMF) and CIPE focus on supporting business women through digital skills training. Liana Sargsyan, from JMF, emphasises the significance of digital skills as a tool to perform better in the digital economy for economically disadvantaged women entrepreneurs from remote regions.

Despite efforts to empower women through digital literacy, it is revealed that many women in Armenia have experienced online gender-based violence and harassment. An anonymous survey among over a hundred Armenian women entrepreneurs showed that around 19% have been targeted online in the workplace, and almost 11% have witnessed other women being targeted. Incidents of online harassment have caused harm, including mental and emotional distress, leaving women feeling unsafe and embarrassed.

The prevalence of technology-facilitated harms negatively impacts the economic opportunities for women entrepreneurs. Many women reported losing their motivation, self-confidence, and interest in their work, leading to the loss of economic opportunity. Women are becoming more cautious about their online interactions to mitigate risks.

There is a lack of public attention towards increasing cases of online violence. Survey findings show that most respondents say there is neglect by the public on the issue of online violence. Incidents often remain unreported, with around 30% of respondents unsure if reporting would help or bring about change. Stakeholders have failed to address this issue with a systematic solution, resulting in a lack of trust in the effectiveness of reporting and fear of retaliation.

The legal framework in Armenia does not sufficiently address technology-facilitated harms. There is no specific law that addresses this issue, and no legal mechanism is in place to enforce and punish offenders. As a result, women in Armenia do not report cases of technology-facilitated harms due to a lack of faith in the existing system. Even when violations are reported, there is often no solution due to the lack of enforcement mechanisms.

Organisations should include gender diversity as an ongoing effort to educate both men and women. The Strategicus Advisory Institute (SAI) encourages organisations to integrate gender diversity into their work, emphasising the need for a global and local strategy. Changing mindset and culture play a crucial role in implementing gender diversity.

The analysis concludes that awareness, training, and protection against technology-facilitated violence are crucial to empower women and foster their economic growth. Efforts to support women entrepreneurs in Armenia should focus on digital literacy and online safety. Furthermore, there is a need for public attention, a systematic solution, and a stronger legal framework to address the issue of online gender-based violence. Finally, organisations should actively promote gender diversity and work towards changing cultural mentality to ensure equal opportunities for men and women.

Adam Sachs

Technology-Facilitated Gender-Based Violence (TFGBV) is a significant barrier to the social and economic opportunities of women, especially businesswomen and entrepreneurs. A global study by The Economist found that 38% of women have personally experienced online violence, and 65% reported knowing other women who had been targeted online. Additionally, 85% of women have witnessed digital violence against other women. This highlights the pervasive nature of TFGBV and the urgent need for action.

The economic implications of TFGBV are concerning, with researchers estimating that online violence costs the global economy over two billion dollars in lost economic opportunity. This reinforces the need to prioritise investments in women’s economic empowerment, which could lead to an additional 10 trillion dollars of economic growth by 2030.

To address TFGBV, an inclusive policy environment should be fostered, supporting women business owners and entrepreneurs. Digital security and safety measures need to be promoted to protect women from online violence. Collaboration between women’s business associations and civil society organisations is essential in combating TFGBV effectively.

One challenge in addressing TFGBV is the lack of awareness among women regarding their victimisation. Many incidents go unreported due to a lack of trust in reporting mechanisms and fear of retaliation. Creating a culture of trust and support is crucial to empower victims.

Adam Sachs emphasises the need to address TFGBV systematically and advocates for regulatory measures. He also highlights the potential of technology to exacerbate or alleviate cultural and social issues.

It is worth noting that Armenia lacks a supportive legal framework to address technology-facilitated harms, underlining the importance of comprehensive policies and regulations. Uniting diverse voices through a coalition can further amplify efforts in raising awareness and finding solutions.

In conclusion, TFGBV poses significant challenges to women’s social and economic opportunities. Actions such as fostering an inclusive policy environment, promoting digital security, raising awareness, and enforcing regulations are needed to combat TFGBV effectively. Empowering women economically and using technology responsibly can create a more equal and inclusive digital world.

Gina Romero

The analysis of the provided statements highlights various issues related to gender equality and the impact of technology. Connected Women, an organization focusing on digital inclusion and upskilling for women in the AI industry, has trained over 1,000 women in entry-level roles such as data annotation. Ethical treatment of digital micro-workers, data literacy, and the risks associated with generative AI tools are also important concerns. Comprehensive education about the functionality and risks of AI tools is needed, particularly for women. The lack of safety considerations and diverse representation in AI development raises concerns. Users’ unawareness of data utilization in AI tools and cultural stereotypes need to be addressed. Men’s active opposition to sexism is encouraged. Lack of diversity in technology development and governance poses societal risks. Addressing these issues is crucial for promoting gender equality and creating an inclusive society in the face of technological advancements.

Nino Gvazava

Upon analysing the provided statements, several noteworthy observations emerge regarding the increasing presence of women in decision-making positions in the tech sector in Georgia. This positive trend reflects a significant shift from the low representation of women in tech observed 5 to 10 years ago. The current landscape now sees women occupying executive-level roles and actively contributing to the transformation of Georgian enterprises into tech-driven entities.

The positive impact of tech-related education targeting women is emphasised as a catalyst for increasing representation in the workforce. Free education, specifically focused on technology for women, has led to a year-on-year improvement in the representation of women in tech careers. The accessibility of such education has been instrumental in empowering women to pursue careers in the sector.

However, concerns are raised about potential gender bias in technology, particularly in relation to artificial intelligence (AI) and gender-based assumptions. It is highlighted that tech tools and AI models, predominantly designed by men, can unintentionally perpetuate gender bias if the input data reflects such biases. This issue underscores the need for diversity and inclusivity in the design and development of tech solutions.

Active discussions surrounding cybersecurity and data protection in Georgia are also evident. The focus is on the proper management and governance of data to safeguard against vulnerability. It is asserted that if data is not managed and governed appropriately, anyone can gain access to it, posing risks to individuals and organizations alike.

The analysis also reveals a concerning lack of knowledge and literacy about data protection and risks. The general public is not paying adequate attention to the disclosure of personal data to companies, leading to increased vulnerabilities. Addressing this issue requires greater awareness and education about data protection to mitigate the risks associated with data mismanagement.

On a broader level, it is argued that women must be actively involved in both the design and use of technology. It is highlighted that when women contribute in a positive way to the development and use of tech tools, society benefits as a whole. Education and the presence of role models are identified as critical factors in encouraging more women to enter the tech industry.

Furthermore, the issue of financial equality for women, particularly concerning heritage, is addressed. It is revealed that in Georgia, only 25% of women receive heritage from their parents, while all men do. This disparity limits women’s opportunities for entrepreneurship and business activities. It is noted that financial equality is a crucial component of gender equality.

The analysis also sheds light on the unequal division of family responsibilities between men and women. Research conducted in Georgia indicates that men spend significantly less effort on family work and childcare compared to women. This imbalance leads to women having less time available for their careers and businesses. To address this, there is a call for men to equally contribute at home, allowing women more time to invest in business and economic activities.

Technology is recognized as a potential equalizer, particularly for women, as it enables work from home and flexible schedules. However, it is acknowledged that proper awareness and knowledge about these technologies are necessary to fully harness their benefits.

In conclusion, progress has been made towards gender equality in the tech sector in Georgia, with an increase in women holding decision-making positions. However, ongoing efforts are needed to address potential risks and biases associated with technology. Platforms for discussion and risk management are deemed essential in tackling these challenges and ensuring that the benefits of technology are inclusive and accessible to all.

AS

Adam Sachs

Speech speed

164 words per minute

Speech length

2486 words

Speech time

909 secs

GR

Gina Romero

Speech speed

170 words per minute

Speech length

2201 words

Speech time

777 secs

LS

Liana Sargsyan

Speech speed

139 words per minute

Speech length

1576 words

Speech time

683 secs

LB

Lina Buchely

Speech speed

117 words per minute

Speech length

1148 words

Speech time

586 secs

NG

Nino Gvazava

Speech speed

141 words per minute

Speech length

1356 words

Speech time

575 secs

Women in the digital economy: driving the usage of digital technology among women (UNCDF)

Table of contents

Disclaimer: This is not an official record of the UNCTAD eWeek session. The DiploAI system automatically generates these resources from the audiovisual recording. Resources are presented in their original format, as provided by the AI (e.g. including any spelling mistakes). The accuracy of these resources cannot be guaranteed. The official record of the session can be found on the UNCTAD website.

Full session report

Shang Gao

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is actively working to bridge the gender and digital skills gap through their training and collaboration efforts. They have committed to providing free training to 29 million individuals globally by 2025, with a focus on empowering women and girls in tech. Already, they have trained 7 million individuals in the Asia-Pacific region since 2017, highlighting their dedication to equipping people with the necessary digital skills.

In addition to training, AWS recognizes the importance of infrastructure in addressing digital inequality. They collaborate with various organizations, including UN agencies, the Asian Development Bank, USAID, and the World Bank Group, to address infrastructure needs such as internet access. By working together, they aim to ensure that everyone has access to digital resources and opportunities.

AWS has also made significant investments and initiatives targeting women and girls in tech. They have launched programs such as AWS GetIT and AWS CloudApp for Her, specifically designed for younger learners and mid-career professional women. Additionally, they collaborate with organizations like Girl in Tech and Women in Tech Singapore, promoting inclusivity and diversity in the tech industry.

Moreover, AWS aims to break the stereotype that the tech industry is exclusively for men. They serve a diverse range of customers and understand the importance of diversifying their own company. By challenging traditional mindsets, AWS strives to create an inclusive environment where everyone has equal opportunities to thrive.

In conclusion, AWS is actively addressing the gender and digital skills gap through training, collaboration, and targeted initiatives. Their commitment to providing free training, collaborating for infrastructure needs, supporting women and girls in tech, and promoting diversity demonstrates their dedication to creating a more inclusive and equitable tech industry.

Veyrl Adell

Veyrl Adell, an exceptional entrepreneur in the tech industry, has made a significant business pivot to empower women in trade by providing them with access to credit through an integrated platform. Adell recognized the potential of technology in bringing about positive change and sought to harness it for the benefit of women entrepreneurs. Initially, she served women across borders between Kenya and Uganda by providing them with credit. As her efforts gained momentum, Adell decided to streamline her operations and transitioned to an integrated platform for credit distribution.

Despite facing obstacles, such as banks’ reluctance to lend to her business, Adell’s resilience and determination helped her find alternative solutions. She thought innovatively about her business model and found ways to support women in business. In addition to providing credit, Adell developed the EFP system, which focuses on empowering small businesses, particularly women and youth. This system offers e-commerce, point of sale, and digital payment benefits, enabling entrepreneurs to leverage technology fully. Financial institutions use EFP system records to support small businesses, extending credit to women and youth. The system also connects rural women with urban business leaders, fostering collaboration and opportunities.

Adell takes a market-oriented approach to developing digital solutions, incorporating market insights and partnering with cooperatives. Engaging with various enterprises and sectors, she gathers market insights to ensure her solutions meet specific needs. By collaborating with cooperatives, Adell educates farmers, tracks performance, and facilitates payments. Her tailored digital solutions are effective and address entrepreneurs’ requirements.

Moreover, Adell emphasizes the importance of fostering women’s skills in open-source development. By recognizing talented women in the tech industry, she aims to bridge the gender gap and promote equality. Leading the project is a young Zambian woman named Doreen, who showcases exceptional understanding and skills in open-source development. Adell’s commitment to empowering women extends not only to entrepreneurship but also to cultivating skilled professionals in the tech field.

Adell’s efforts align with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 5 and 9. SDG 5 focuses on Gender Equality, promoting women’s empowerment, eliminating discrimination, and ensuring equal opportunities. Through her integrated platform and initiatives, Adell creates financial opportunities for women in trade, contributing to their economic well-being. SDG 9 encompasses Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure, driving sustainable economic growth, technological advancement, and inclusive industrialization. Adell’s market-oriented digital solutions, based on market insights and cooperative partnerships, contribute to achieving this goal.

In conclusion, Veyrl Adell’s entrepreneurial journey in the tech industry demonstrates her determination to empower women in trade through innovative solutions. Her pivot to an integrated platform for credit distribution, the development of the EFP system, and her focus on fostering women’s skills in open-source development exemplify her commitment to gender equality and technological advancement. Adell’s efforts align with SDG 5: Gender Equality and SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure, making a significant contribution to achieving these global goals.

Karima Wardak

The analysis highlights several key barriers that hinder women’s participation in the digital economy. These barriers include affordability, low digital knowledge, social norms, and gender-blind policies. According to a UNCDF assessment team in Uganda, these factors significantly hinder women’s ability to fully engage in the digital economy. Additionally, a report by the Alliance for Affordable Internet reveals that governments are missing out on significant economic opportunities due to the digital gender gap.

Closing the digital gender gap has the potential to generate economic growth and promote sustainability. Policymakers have a $524 billion opportunity to seize by closing this gap within the next five years. Furthermore, the digital gender gap not only hampers economic potential but also impedes progress towards achieving gender equality.

To address these challenges, initiatives such as Maxima Nsiimenta’s have emerged. Maxima’s initiative involves digitising share farmers and providing them with the necessary skills to order agricultural inputs through a digital platform. Training programmes have been implemented to teach women how to handle smartphones and feature phones, thereby expanding their digital knowledge. Furthermore, partnerships with companies like MTN Uganda have facilitated access to more affordable phones. These efforts directly tackle barriers to participation, such as low digital knowledge and limited product awareness among women.

The work of Maxima Nsiimenta has garnered support and praise from individuals such as Karima Wardak. Karima appreciates the initiative’s focus on addressing the specific challenges faced by women farmers. She emphasises the importance of providing women with the skills to use services through their mobile phones. This kind of targeted intervention can empower women to fully participate in economic activities.

Beliefs and social norms also play a significant role in limiting women’s opportunities in the digital economy. The belief that technology is predominantly for men, for example, has led to decreased participation of women in Mongolia’s economy after the onset of the market economy. Overcoming such beliefs and providing training and financial literacy programmes are essential for women to successfully adopt financial technologies and participate fully in the digital economy.

Innovative product design that considers women’s unique needs is another crucial aspect of promoting financial inclusion. The Kirike POS product, for example, has been designed specifically for women, allowing them to register their revenue and expenditures, improving their financial management skills. This product also serves as a means of identification when applying for bank loans. Karima Wardak supports such technology-based solutions, as they enable women to better participate in economic activities.

Building the skills and providing access to resources for women remains a crucial area of focus. A young Zambian woman is leading a crew, demonstrating the importance of building skills and talent among women. Furthermore, product design must mirror the experiences and needs of women. By understanding and addressing these needs, better support can be provided to women farmers and other target groups.

Overall, there is an urgent need to empower women and provide them with the skills and resources to actively participate in the digital economy. Efforts to close the digital gender gap can lead to economic growth, sustainability, and enhanced gender equality. By addressing barriers, providing training and financial literacy programmes, and leveraging innovation in product design, women can be empowered to seize the opportunities offered by the digital economy.

Maxima Nsiimenta

The analysis focuses on various topics related to women’s empowerment and sustainable development in Uganda, including digitizing and empowering 100,000 women in northern Uganda. The initiative is being carried out in partnership with the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) and aims to provide women with access to digital tools and resources, promoting gender equality and economic development.

Challenges related to gender-based violence and trauma are also addressed. Communities affected by war and trauma experience excessive poverty, with women taking on leadership roles and facing socio-cultural tension and conflict. Overcoming these challenges is crucial for achieving gender equality and promoting good health and well-being.

Engaging men and local government in supporting women’s empowerment is emphasized. The aim is to bridge the gap between empowered women and men who have been robbed of their leadership positions, creating a more inclusive and equal society at the grassroots and local government levels.

Deforestation is another important issue addressed in the analysis. Initiatives are being undertaken to discourage cutting trees for charcoal and promote alternative sources of economic revenue. This aligns with the Sustainable Development Goals related to responsible consumption and production, climate action, and the preservation of life on land.

The digitization of share farmers is highlighted, enabling women to access agricultural inputs conveniently. Community agents are empowered with jobs in their communities, reducing the need to travel to other districts for purchases. This initiative contributes to gender equality and zero hunger.

Increasing access to markets for women is also emphasized. Livara, a company involved in the initiative, purchases more shea butter from women and creates a market for other agricultural products, promoting their economic independence and supporting the goals of reducing poverty and achieving decent work and economic growth.

Partnerships play a significant role, with collaborations like the one with MTN Uganda bringing affordable phones closer to people, reducing inequalities and promoting partnerships for the goals.

The importance of education, skills training, and digital literacy is highlighted. Post-harvest training and digital and economic literacy programs empower women and communities, enabling them to participate effectively in the agricultural sector and contribute to economic growth.

Access to information is crucial for empowering women. Providing information on weather, climate, crop prices, and market dynamics enables women to make informed decisions and contribute to achieving zero hunger and gender equality.

Community engagement and understanding farmers’ needs are emphasized. Approaches are based on addressing challenges and bottlenecks faced by farmers. Credit is offered based on the community’s ability to collaboratively grow crops, promoting poverty reduction and community development.

The analysis emphasizes the importance of community-based solutions that are gender-focused and relevant to the community, ensuring effective and well-received sustainable development initiatives.

In conclusion, the analysis highlights various initiatives in Uganda aimed at empowering women and promoting sustainable development. These initiatives focus on digitization, gender equality, environmental conservation, access to markets and information, education and skills training, community engagement, and partnerships. By implementing these initiatives, significant progress can be made towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG 5 (Gender Equality), SDG 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth), and SDG 1 (No Poverty) in Uganda.

Enkhjargal Natsagdorj

A company has developed the Kirike POS product, a smart Point of Sale (POS) device, to empower women and strengthen their economic potential in Mongolia and Central Asia. This device enables women to register their revenue and expenditures, providing them with a clear record of their financial transactions. Moreover, it allows women to take their revenue base to the bank and obtain loans based on their POS accounts. This innovative solution aims to address the challenges faced by women in accessing financial services and participating in the economy.

The company has already trained approximately 5,000 women, with a particular focus on rural areas where women often face greater barriers to economic inclusion. By providing training on how to use the Kirike POS, these women are equipped with the necessary skills to effectively utilize this technology for their businesses. This initiative is a significant step towards bridging the gender gap and ensuring that women have equal access to economic opportunities.

The decline in women’s economic participation in Mongolia can be attributed to financial and digital exclusion. Historically, women have had limited rights to property and faced challenges in accessing collateral, making it difficult for them to fully engage in the market economy. Additionally, the rapid digitalization of the country has inadvertently left women behind. Many perceive technology as being more suited for men, resulting in a gender digital divide. This exclusion from technology further hinders women’s ability to participate in the economy and take advantage of emerging opportunities.

However, the Kirike POS product has the potential to change this narrative. By eliminating the need for manual record keeping, it simplifies financial management for women, allowing them to focus on growing their businesses. Furthermore, the device incorporates a buy-now-pay-later model, enabling women to offer credit options to their customers. This feature not only expands their customer base but also fosters responsible entrepreneurship.

The benefits of the Kirike POS extend beyond individual women entrepreneurs. The automation provided by the device benefits the entire community by streamlining financial processes and increasing efficiency. This technology has the potential to drive economic growth and empowerment, ultimately contributing to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDG 5 (Gender Equality) and SDG 9 (Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure).

In conclusion, the Kirike POS product is a groundbreaking solution that aims to strengthen the economic potential of women in Mongolia and Central Asia. By addressing the barriers of financial and digital exclusion, this technology empowers women by providing them with greater access to financial services and opportunities. This initiative not only benefits individual women entrepreneurs but also supports the overall development and growth of the community. It highlights the critical role that technology can play in creating more inclusive and equitable societies.

Elwyn Panggabean

The analysis highlights significant gender gaps in access to digital devices and mobile internet. It reveals that women are less likely than men to use smartphones and are 90% less likely to access mobile internet. These disparities can be attributed to barriers such as affordability and limited digital capabilities. Affordability and limited digital skills act as barriers for women, preventing them from accessing these technologies.

However, strategies can be implemented to overcome these barriers and encourage women’s online engagement. Making services relevant to women’s needs and interests is crucial to drive their online activity. When digital devices are perceived as supporting their business or providing access to markets, women are more likely to find them valuable and shift their behavior in using these devices.

Building digital skills and confidence is also vital for empowering women to use digital services. Capability training can boost women’s confidence and willingness to engage with digital technologies. Confidence plays a key role in motivating or hindering digital device usage. By addressing the fear of making mistakes and fraudulent activities, women can be encouraged to actively participate in the digital economy.

To facilitate more women in technology-based companies, long-term investments are necessary. Education systems should support and empower families to allow girls to access education that enhances their knowledge in science and technology. Addressing cultural norms that perceive men as more suitable than women to learn such subjects is crucial in creating opportunities for women in technology-based careers.

Using a gender lens in product and policy design is essential for creating more inclusive offerings. Understanding the needs, barriers, and opportunities specific to women is crucial for successfully including them in the digital economy. Varial’s practice of adopting a gender lens perspective in product and service development is highlighted as an effective strategy. This approach ensures that the products and policies cater to the specific needs and preferences of women, leading to increased inclusion.

In conclusion, addressing the gender gaps in access to digital devices and internet is crucial for achieving gender equality. Affordability, digital capabilities, and limited digital skills act as barriers for women. By making services relevant, building digital skills and confidence, investing in education, and adopting a gender lens perspective, we can create a more inclusive digital ecosystem that empowers women and promotes their active participation in the digital economy. Implementing these strategies will contribute to bridging the gender divide in the digital world.

Rupa Chanda

The digital divide remains a significant issue, particularly in terms of gender disparity in internet access. Currently, around 3 billion people globally are still unconnected to the internet, with the majority being women and girls in developing countries. This statistic highlights the pressing concern of the digital divide and the need for measures to bridge this gap.

Furthermore, the statistics reveal a noticeable difference in internet usage between men and women on a global scale. On average, 62% of men use the internet, compared to 57% of women. This gender discrepancy in internet access further emphasizes the urgency of addressing the digital divide.

Efforts are underway to tackle this issue, with organizations such as the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) taking the lead. ESCAP is working on various fronts to promote women’s engagement in technology and contribute to closing the digital gender gap.

ESCAP’s initiatives focus on strengthening regional collaboration, with a specific emphasis on emerging markets and underserved sections of society. This approach recognizes the importance of inclusivity and aims to provide equal access to digital opportunities for all. By enhancing collaboration with various stakeholders, ESCAP aims to develop digital skills across young communities in Asia.

Additionally, ESCAP recognizes the need for financial support to drive impactful solutions. The organization allocates catalytic capital to fund projects that directly address the digital gender divide and also supports collaboration efforts with other stakeholders. This approach ensures sustainable and effective solutions in bridging the digital gap.

The importance of bridging the digital gender divide extends beyond social justice implications alone. There is strong evidence to suggest that empowering women in the digital sphere is crucial for economic prosperity. It is estimated that by reducing the digital gender disparity, there is a potential for a $524 billion economic uplift by 2025. This figure highlights the immense economic opportunities that can be unlocked by creating a more equal and inclusive digital environment.

Moreover, the underrepresentation of women in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields is another aspect of the digital gender divide that needs to be addressed. Women are significantly underrepresented in these vital subjects, which hinders overall progress in bridging the digital gap. Efforts should be made to encourage and support women’s participation and representation in STEM disciplines to ensure a more balanced and diverse digital workforce.

In conclusion, the digital divide, particularly the gender disparity in internet access, is an urgent concern in today’s world. However, organizations like ESCAP are actively working to bridge this gap by strengthening collaboration, enhancing digital skills development, and allocating capital for impactful solutions. Addressing the digital gender divide is not only a matter of social justice but is also essential for sustainable and inclusive economic growth. Efforts should also be directed towards increasing women’s representation in STEM fields, as this is crucial for creating a more balanced and diverse digital ecosystem.

EP

Elwyn Panggabean

Speech speed

164 words per minute

Speech length

1427 words

Speech time

523 secs

EN

Enkhjargal Natsagdorj

Speech speed

140 words per minute

Speech length

868 words

Speech time

371 secs

KW

Karima Wardak

Speech speed

152 words per minute

Speech length

2707 words

Speech time

1069 secs

MN

Maxima Nsiimenta

Speech speed

158 words per minute

Speech length

1044 words

Speech time

396 secs

RC

Rupa Chanda

Speech speed

167 words per minute

Speech length

692 words

Speech time

248 secs

SG

Shang Gao

Speech speed

171 words per minute

Speech length

1853 words

Speech time

649 secs

VA

Veyrl Adell

Speech speed

197 words per minute

Speech length

1574 words

Speech time

480 secs

Unlocking Global Trade Efficiency: Promoting Digital Trade through the Adoption of the UNCITRAL Model Law on Electronic Transferable Records (ICC)

Table of contents

Disclaimer: This is not an official record of the UNCTAD eWeek session. The DiploAI system automatically generates these resources from the audiovisual recording. Resources are presented in their original format, as provided by the AI (e.g. including any spelling mistakes). The accuracy of these resources cannot be guaranteed. The official record of the session can be found on the UNCTAD website.

Full session report

Milot Ahma

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has been actively promoting the Malitra reform for over a year. This reform aims to facilitate access to finance for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The EBRD is involved in various bodies that advocate for the reform and its benefits, demonstrating their commitment to supporting economic development.

Multilateral development banks (MDBs) also play a role in explaining the benefits of Malitra to country authorities and advocating for its implementation. However, it is important to note that the impact and benefits of the reform may vary for each country.

The Malita reform is considered essential in the transition to a digital economy. It aims to facilitate digitalization and innovation, which are crucial for economic growth. Electronic representation of instruments like bills of exchange and promissory notes is also revolutionizing their usage, opening up new opportunities.

The EBRD has evaluated countries’ readiness for digitization through a blueprint report in partnership with Castle. This evaluation framework assesses the legal framework and actual instruments in place.

Making a business case for countries to understand the economic impact of the reform is crucial. Authorities must be convinced of the reform’s potential impact and prioritize its implementation.

The EBRD is actively involved in legal reforms to encourage governments to embrace digital trade and trade finance. They advocate for Malita alignment and incorporating digital trade documents into their facilities.

Overall, the EBRD’s commitment to promoting the Malitra reform and embracing digitalization highlights their dedication to fostering economic growth, innovation, and infrastructure development. By advocating for the reform and supporting governments, they create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive.

Jun Xu

The extended summary discusses the potential benefits and challenges of using electronic transferable documents, specifically the Electronic Bill of Lading (EBL), in the global trade finance industry. The speakers in the discussion present various viewpoints and arguments regarding the adoption and implementation of electronic transferable records.

One of the main arguments highlighted is the need for EBLs to be legally recognised and functionally equivalent to paper documents. The speakers emphasise that electronic documents like EBLs should have the same legal status as their paper counterparts. This recognition is essential to ensure a smooth transition from paper-based processes to electronic methods.

However, the slow adoption of legislation enabling electronic transferable records is seen as a major obstacle worldwide, including in Asia. Studies from the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) highlight this slow progress. Legal uncertainty is mentioned as a significant challenge, with the absence of clear regulations hindering the broader use of electronic transferable documents.

Despite these challenges, the speakers present a compelling argument for the advantages of EBLs. They explain that with electronic documents, such as EBLs, transactions can be processed within moments instead of weeks, leading to faster trade processes. This speed brings a reduction in costs and workload. Additionally, the elimination of risks associated with paper documents, such as loss or damage, is another significant benefit of electronic transferable records.

The discussion also introduces Melita, a digital platform, as a solution to aid in the adoption of electronic transferable documents. Participants suggest that Melita can provide a legal framework and platform for banks to maintain a continuous monitoring process for specific exposures related to collateral. It is mentioned that negotiable EBLs can be taken as collateral by banks, and Melita can facilitate better control over trade documents.

The potential of electronic methods in trade finance is further emphasised by the speakers. They point out that electronic transmission of documents allows for immediate payment processing and reduces the chances of document loss during transmission. A case instance is shared, wherein a customer’s documents were lost in transit, highlighting the need for electronic methods in mitigating such risks.

The conversation also highlights the broader impact of implementing electronic transferable records. It is noted that global trade finance accounts for a significant portion of global GDP, with studies indicating a trade finance gap of trillions of dollars. Participants suggest that Melita can play a vital role in promoting global trade, bridging the finance gap, and achieving an additional trillion dollars in trade by 2026 through digitalisation.

Furthermore, the implementation of Melita is seen as an opportunity to boost the digital trade finance ecosystem. Currently, less than 5% of merchandise trade is digitised, indicating the potential for growth in the digitalisation of trade finance. The speakers highlight the importance of harmonised standards for electronic documents, which Melita can facilitate.

Another noteworthy point is the consideration of sustainability in trade finance. The speakers note that the adoption of 100% electronic bill of lading could save thousands of trees annually. Melita is seen as a tool that promotes paperless processes and contributes to environmental benefits in global trade.

Finally, the ICC eRules are mentioned as a compatible solution with Melita principles. Participants suggest the use of ICC eRules in trade to ensure harmony and compatibility between different digital systems.

In conclusion, the extended summary highlights the need for the legal recognition and equivalence of electronic transferable documents, namely the Electronic Bill of Lading (EBL), to overcome the challenges faced in the adoption of electronic methods in trade finance. The potential benefits of EBLs include faster processing, reduced costs and workload, and the elimination of risks associated with paper documents. The implementation of Melita, a digital platform, is seen as a solution that can aid in the adoption of electronic transferable documents and facilitate better control over trade documents. Participants also stress the broader positive impact of Melita in promoting global trade, bridging the trade finance gap, boosting the digital trade finance ecosystem, and contributing to sustainability in trade finance. The compatibility of ICC eRules with Melita principles is highlighted as a means to ensure compatibility between different digital systems in trade. Overall, the discussion presents a comprehensive analysis of the potential benefits and challenges of electronic transferable documents in global trade finance.

Tianmi Stilphe

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Digital Standards Initiative is dedicated to promoting the adoption and alignment of the model law on electronic transferable records, known as Malita. This model law, which has been under development for multiple years, aims to enhance trade efficiency through digitalisation. The ICC’s initiative is global in scope, with its base in Singapore.

One key emphasis of the initiative is on the significance of collaboration and community in promoting digital trade. The panel includes representatives from different organisations and sectors, such as On-Situal and Bank of China, showcasing the collaborative approach taken. This demonstrates that digital trade requires the involvement of various stakeholders working together to achieve its goals.

While digital trade has made significant progress in business-to-consumer (B2C) transactions, logistical processes and global cross-border trade still heavily rely on traditional, paper-based documentation. This highlights the necessity to modernise and digitise these logistical processes to improve trade efficiency.

The paper-based process of trade is relatively slow and can be susceptible to interruptions, as seen during the COVID-19 pandemic. The reliance on physical documentation posed challenges due to disrupted supply chains and limited mobility. This experience highlighted the need for digital solutions that can mitigate the potential interruptions caused by global-scale events.

Within the modernisation process of global trade, the banking industry and trade finance play crucial roles. Their active involvement in this process can significantly impact the speed and efficiency of transnational commercial transactions.

The adoption of digitalisation in trade processes, such as the use of electronic transferable records, offers numerous benefits. It can lead to faster and more efficient trade operations, lower costs, and reduce the risks of document loss, forgery or fraud. The ability to transfer electronic bills of lading (EBLs) in moments instead of weeks improves both speed and accuracy. Additionally, electronic records reduce the workload, cost, and accessibility barriers associated with traditional paper-based systems.

Furthermore, the adoption of Malita and other legal reforms enables the creation of an inclusive and interoperable legal environment for international trade. This is crucial as it provides certainty to traders and recipients by granting a transparent and consistent legal framework across different nations.

Digitisation is also seen as a key enabler for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the global economy. Traditional trade processes often pose significant barriers to SMEs due to high costs and limited resources. However, with digital platforms, these businesses can advertise their products and reach customers without the need for substantial capital investments. Furthermore, digitalisation can significantly lower operational costs for businesses.

The transition to digital trade processes is not a swift or easy one. Each country’s journey towards digitalisation presents unique challenges. However, numerous resources and guidance, such as a one-hour crash course on Malita, are available to facilitate this transition. Additionally, platforms exist to track the progress of digital transformation.

In conclusion, the adoption and alignment of the model law on electronic transferable records, promoted by the ICC Digital Standards Initiative, is crucial in improving trade efficiency and enabling global digital trade. Collaboration and community involvement are emphasised to foster digital trade. The paper-based process of trade needs to be modernised and digitised to overcome its limitations. The banking industry and trade finance play critical roles in the modernisation process. The adoption of digitisation in trade processes offers faster and more efficient operations, lower costs and reduced risks. It also enables the creation of an inclusive and interoperable legal environment for international trade. Lastly, digitisation facilitates SME participation in the global economy by reducing barriers to trade. While the transition to digital trade may present challenges, resources and guidance are available to support this process.

Luca Castellani

The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) has been at the forefront of promoting electronic transactions for over three decades. They have prepared model laws and treaties that have been adopted in more than 100 states. One area that UNCITRAL has addressed is the use of physical paper documents in the ordering of goods or payment, which has traditionally been the norm. The need to modernize this process and embrace electronic transferable records became even more evident during the COVID-19 pandemic, where the reliance on paper documents created significant chokepoints in trade.

To address this issue, the Model Law on Electronic Transferable Records (MELITRA) was developed just in time before the pandemic hit. MELITRA was designed to enable the electronic use of documents of title without requiring changes to existing legislation. Its benefits have been widely acknowledged by international bodies and nations, facilitating its adoption. This model law has played a pivotal role in the digitization of commerce, allowing users to control logistics and supply chains in a more efficient and resilient manner. Additionally, MELITRA accommodates the input of data from the Internet of Things (IoT), enabling the digitization of the entire trade process from start to finish.

Both the private and public sectors have shown a keen interest in MELITRA, with the G7 countries demonstrating particular enthusiasm. Luca Castellani, a prominent advocate, strongly supports the adoption of MELITRA, emphasizing its ability to facilitate the digitization of trade and commerce. Not only does MELITRA offer benefits to businesses, but it also contributes to cost savings. For example, a case study involving a small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) importing fruit from Latin America using electronic bills of lading resulted in a saving of approximately £174,000 per year. This represents a remarkable 10 to 15% of the company’s overall profit. Therefore, embracing trade digitalization can lead to significant cost savings for businesses.

Furthermore, the increased adoption of Malita, a system for issuing electronic bills of lading, will provide businesses with greater choice and flexibility in their trade operations. Currently, the adoption of Malita is limited to certain jurisdictions, which restricts options for companies wishing to utilize electronic bills of lading. However, reports indicate a growing acceptance of electronic bills, with cases of shipments from North America to Chile being covered under Singapore law, demonstrating the expanding recognition of electronic bills in trade.

Trade digitization and the uptake of electronic transfer records are happening at a faster pace than initially anticipated. The progress of digital transformation in trade is outpacing expectations, underscoring the significance and urgency of embracing new technologies and practices. Digital transformation is an ongoing process that will continue to evolve with advancements in technology and changes in business practices. The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and its Digital Standards Initiative (ICCDSI) deserve recognition for their efforts in leading the journey of digital transformation in the private sector.

In conclusion, UNCITRAL’s promotion of electronic transactions, the development and adoption of MELITRA and MLETR, and the push for trade digitalization have created a significant shift in the way trade is conducted. The benefits of digitization, such as improved efficiency, resilience, and cost savings, are widely recognized by both the private and public sectors. The momentum towards digital transformation is growing rapidly, and embracing these changes is crucial for businesses to remain competitive in the evolving global market.

JX

Jun Xu

Speech speed

128 words per minute

Speech length

1863 words

Speech time

873 secs

LC

Luca Castellani

Speech speed

147 words per minute

Speech length

2014 words

Speech time

823 secs

MA

Milot Ahma

Speech speed

187 words per minute

Speech length

1949 words

Speech time

624 secs

TS

Tianmi Stilphe

Speech speed

166 words per minute

Speech length

3161 words

Speech time

1142 secs

Unlocking the power of e-Commerce for SMEs: Successes, Challenges and Opportunities (eTrade for Women and LUDMARC)

Table of contents

Disclaimer: This is not an official record of the UNCTAD eWeek session. The DiploAI system automatically generates these resources from the audiovisual recording. Resources are presented in their original format, as provided by the AI (e.g. including any spelling mistakes). The accuracy of these resources cannot be guaranteed. The official record of the session can be found on the UNCTAD website.

Full session report

Natalia Facciolo

The analysis provided focuses on two main themes: digital transformation and women in tech in Argentina. Natalia, the owner of Ludmark, shares her experience of implementing e-commerce in her business, which was established in 2007. The transition to digital was a significant change for Ludmark, requiring a shift in mindset, platform adjustment, and new service delivery methods. Trust-building factors, such as product delivery and payment methods, also needed to be reconsidered.

Natalia stresses that the digital transformation was an ongoing process, rather than a one-time event. She emphasizes the importance of investing in knowledge acquisition and collaborating with individuals who possess technical expertise to ensure a successful transformation. This highlights the need for continuous learning and adaptation in the face of evolving digital technologies.

In terms of gender equality, Natalia expresses support for women in tech and digital transformations. She emphasizes the importance of connecting with other women on a similar journey and acknowledges the value of her participation in the E-Trade for Women masterclass, which provided her with useful tools for her e-commerce journey. However, the analysis also highlights the prevalent gender inequality in business, with only 2% of women receiving financial assistance in digital businesses. This underscores the need for greater support and opportunities for women entrepreneurs in Argentina.

Additionally, the analysis suggests a need for more role models and financial tools for women in business. It emphasizes the importance of women acquiring skills such as preparing business pitches and selling ideas to overcome gender-based challenges. Furthermore, women are seeking more training opportunities in business, as indicated by the positive sentiment towards increased business training.

Lastly, the analysis draws attention to the scarcity of technology and internet access in Argentina. Many places in the country lack Wi-Fi or reliable internet connections, which poses a significant barrier to digital transformation and business growth.

In conclusion, the analysis highlights the challenges and opportunities related to digital transformation and women in tech in Argentina. Natalia’s experience illustrates the adjustments required for successful digital transformation, while also highlighting the need for continuous learning and collaboration. The gender imbalance in business, along with the scarcity of technology and internet access, present significant obstacles for women entrepreneurs. However, the recognition of the need for more role models, financial tools, and business training for women indicates a growing awareness of the importance of gender equality in the digital world.

Kamikazi Yeetah

The analysis highlights the various barriers that women face in accessing resources, digital skills, networks, and opportunities. These barriers greatly hinder their ability to thrive in the digital era. Women may encounter challenges in accessing financial resources needed to invest in technology and build digital businesses. Additionally, they may also face difficulties in accessing the necessary technological infrastructure, such as reliable internet connectivity and devices.

A significant barrier for women is the lack of digital skills and knowledge. Many women may not have had the opportunity to acquire the necessary skills to navigate and utilise digital tools effectively. This lack of proficiency in digital technology can further limit their access to employment opportunities and hinder their participation in the digital economy.

Another key obstacle identified is the fear of technology and the lack of visible role models in the field. Many women may feel apprehensive about embracing digital technologies due to the potential challenges and barriers associated with them. The absence of successful women entrepreneurs in the technology sector can lead to a lack of confidence and lower adoption rates among other women.

To mitigate these barriers, it is crucial to focus on increased education, training, and visibility of successful women in technology. By providing women with the necessary knowledge and skills through education and training programmes, they can become better equipped to overcome the digital divide. Initiatives in Rwanda have already begun addressing this issue by offering training programmes that teach women about e-commerce. As a result, some e-commerce businesses, such as Mulkadi and Olado, have started utilising these digital tools in Rwanda, showcasing positive progress in overcoming barriers.

In conclusion, women face several obstacles in accessing resources, digital skills, networks, and opportunities. These barriers, including limited financial resources, technological infrastructure, digital skills, and fear of technology, hinder their ability to fully participate in the digital era. However, by focusing on education, training, and increasing the visibility of successful women in technology, progress can be made in breaking down these barriers. Initiatives such as e-commerce training programmes in Rwanda provide an encouraging example of how these challenges can be overcome. It is crucial to continue implementing such solutions to empower women and ensure their active participation in the digital economy.

Ariunaa Adiya

Mongolia, a country heavily dependent on the mining sector, is actively pursuing digital transformation to diversify its economy. With the goal of becoming a digital nation by 2025, the government is taking steps to develop its services trade through digitalization. This move is driven by the recognition that the current dependence on mining is not sustainable in the long run.

One of the key supporting facts is that nearly 90% of Mongolia’s economy relies on the mining sector. This over-reliance on a single sector makes the country vulnerable to fluctuations in commodity prices and other external factors. By embracing digital transformation, the government aims to reduce this dependency and create a more resilient and diverse economy.

To achieve this, the government has shown a positive stance by engaging with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) for e-trade readiness assessment. This collaboration demonstrates Mongolia’s commitment to leveraging digital technologies for economic growth and development. Additionally, the government has launched 75 recommendations for readiness assessment, emphasizing the importance of proper preparation and planning for a successful digital transformation.

In order to realize the digitalization goals, the government needs to focus on developing e-skills, improving ICT infrastructure services, and promoting the adoption of e-payment systems. These factors are crucial in creating an enabling environment for digital innovation and ensuring that businesses and individuals can fully benefit from digitalization. By enhancing e-skills, the government can empower the workforce to adapt and thrive in the digital era. Furthermore, investing in robust ICT infrastructure is essential for providing reliable and accessible digital services to all parts of the country. Lastly, promoting the use of e-payment systems will facilitate seamless financial transactions, making it easier for businesses to operate and for citizens to engage in online transactions.

It is noteworthy that Mongolia’s pursuit of digital transformation aligns with its commitment to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 8 and 9. SDG 8 focuses on promoting inclusive and sustainable economic growth, while SDG 9 emphasizes the importance of building resilient infrastructure and promoting innovation. By diversifying its economy through digitalization, Mongolia aims to achieve these SDGs and create a more sustainable and prosperous future.

Overall, Mongolia’s active pursuit of digital transformation is a positive step towards diversifying its economy and reducing its dependence on the mining sector. By embracing digital technologies and focusing on key areas of development, such as e-skills and ICT infrastructure, the country can create new opportunities for economic growth and development. This move towards becoming a digital nation aligns with Mongolia’s commitment to the SDGs, further underscoring its dedication to sustainable and inclusive economic progress.

Rie Namiki

GrocerVelle, a successful online grocery store launched in 2019, recently achieved great success through an acquisition. The founders of GrocerVelle shared their inspiring journey in the e-commerce industry, driven by the desire to meet consumer needs and provide a convenient one-stop solution for grocery shopping.

Amidst the pandemic, GrocerVelle experienced a significant surge in sales, contributing to the company’s growth. The team adeptly adapted to the changing circumstances, ensuring efficient service delivery during these challenging times. Additionally, GrocerVelle played a pivotal role in empowering women by actively hiring them and forming strategic partnerships with local farming businesses.

The discussion also delved into how women entrepreneurs can leverage digital tools to enhance their efficiency and expand their businesses. With technology constantly evolving, e-commerce entrepreneurs worldwide face both opportunities and challenges that require constant adaptation. The experiences shared shed light on the shared struggles and unique obstacles faced by e-commerce entrepreneurs in different regions.

The conversation then shifted to the macroeconomic aspect, exploring how digital transformation can be fostered in conventional businesses, specifically in Mongolia’s transition from its commodity-based economy. The panelists identified barriers and discussed strategies to facilitate cross-border e-commerce in Mongolia, a landlocked country.

Insights were also shared from ecosystem players, focusing on the context in Rwanda. Ita, an ecosystem player from Rwanda, highlighted the hurdles faced by women-led businesses in embracing digital transformation and identified key factors inhibiting women from harnessing the benefits of digital technologies. Lack of role models and fear of failure were significant challenges addressed.

The discussion concluded with a call to action for mindset shifts to encourage women entrepreneurs to embrace e-commerce and digital transformation. By overcoming barriers and fostering supportive ecosystems, greater participation and success for women in the digital economy can be achieved.

Overall, the panel discussion provided valuable insights into the journey of GrocerVelle and the experiences of e-commerce entrepreneurs. It emphasized the importance of adapting to changing circumstances, empowering women, and addressing barriers to digital transformation. These insights serve as a guide for entrepreneurs and policymakers seeking to promote e-commerce and women’s empowerment in their own contexts.

Yvette Uwimpaye

The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly changed the way people shop, prompting a surge in online shopping. In response to this trend, a woman took advantage of the opportunity and decided to study economics at university, recognizing the benefit of understanding this field for her family’s e-commerce business. After completing her studies, she sought an internship within her family’s business, gaining valuable practical experience.

However, it was becoming a mother that truly inspired her entrepreneurial journey. As she started her own family, she realised the need for convenient online grocery shopping in Rwanda. This realisation motivated her to open an online grocery store to cater to the needs of other busy parents and individuals.

To ensure the success of her online grocery store, she adopted a strategic approach. She set a timeframe of four years to test the viability of her business, allowing enough time to gather data and assess its progress. This careful planning enabled her to be prepared for any potential obstacles, and she remained open to exploring alternative paths if her initial plan did not prove successful.

Despite her determination and vision, she faced initial discouragement from her family and encountered more criticism than support. People were sceptical of this new model of online shopping, preferring the traditional brick-and-mortar stores that they were familiar with. However, she remained persistent and believed in her e-commerce platform, determined to prove its worth.

In conclusion, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a surge in online shopping, impacting various aspects of life and business. This woman’s story showcases the power of recognising opportunities and adapting to changing circumstances. Through her studies and personal experiences, she identified the need for online grocery shopping and took necessary steps to establish her own e-commerce venture. Despite facing initial discouragement, she persevered and turned her vision into a successful online grocery store, catering to the needs of busy individuals and parents in Rwanda. Her story serves as an inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs in the e-commerce field, highlighting the importance of strategic planning, perseverance, and belief in one’s vision.

Priyanka Chetry

GrocerVelle, a company founded by Priyanka Chetry, had a strong focus on sustainability, local product promotion, and women’s empowerment. The company implemented plastic-free delivery as a way to minimize environmental impact and supported local producers and farmers by providing them with a platform to showcase and sell their products. Notably, GrocerVelle employed female delivery drivers, and 80% of its staff were women, contributing to women’s empowerment.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, GrocerVelle experienced a substantial surge in customer orders, with a remarkable 300% increase. This growth can be attributed to the shift in consumer behavior, with more people turning to online shopping during the lockdown. This heightened demand allowed GrocerVelle to expand its reach and solidify its position in the e-commerce market.

Despite the initial success, GrocerVelle faced financial challenges and required additional funds for further growth. As a result, the company was acquired by Azyla. This acquisition provided the necessary capital and resources to support GrocerVelle’s expansion plans.

Priyanka Chetry firmly believes in the potential of digital entrepreneurship to bring about positive change and drive economic growth in Cambodia. By leveraging digital tools and technologies, entrepreneurs can streamline their business operations, expand their customer base, and enhance productivity. Digital tools such as project management software, cloud-based storage, and video conferencing can significantly benefit businesses, while social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter offer opportunities for increased engagement, brand building, and customer loyalty. Moreover, digital platforms, including community forums and social media groups, enable women entrepreneurs to connect with like-minded individuals and foster a supportive network.

In addition to leveraging digital tools, women entrepreneurs can also benefit from specific networks and platforms that cater to their needs. E-Trade for Women, for example, provides a valuable platform for women entrepreneurs to share experiences, gain knowledge, and engage in collaborative efforts. The network offers mentorship, training, and facilitates access to new markets, fostering the growth and success of women-led businesses.

Overall, the story of GrocerVelle showcases the importance of sustainability, local product promotion, and women’s empowerment in driving a successful business. Additionally, it highlights the significant role that digital tools and networks can play in enhancing entrepreneurship, particularly for women, and fostering economic growth.

AA

Ariunaa Adiya

Speech speed

140 words per minute

Speech length

542 words

Speech time

232 secs

KY

Kamikazi Yeetah

Speech speed

111 words per minute

Speech length

658 words

Speech time

357 secs

NF

Natalia Facciolo

Speech speed

124 words per minute

Speech length

705 words

Speech time

342 secs

PC

Priyanka Chetry

Speech speed

157 words per minute

Speech length

1509 words

Speech time

578 secs

RN

Rie Namiki

Speech speed

122 words per minute

Speech length

665 words

Speech time

326 secs

YU

Yvette Uwimpaye

Speech speed

135 words per minute

Speech length

471 words

Speech time

209 secs

Unlocking potential: Addressing inclusivity barriers in e-commerce trade to deliver sustainable impact in communities everywhere (United Kingdom)

Table of contents

Disclaimer: This is not an official record of the UNCTAD eWeek session. The DiploAI system automatically generates these resources from the audiovisual recording. Resources are presented in their original format, as provided by the AI (e.g. including any spelling mistakes). The accuracy of these resources cannot be guaranteed. The official record of the session can be found on the UNCTAD website.

Full session report

Sangeeta Khorana

In the analysis, the speakers discussed several key aspects of e-commerce and its impact on various areas, including gender equality, business growth, and economic development. One important topic that emerged was the significance of sustainable supply chains and inclusive trade. The speakers emphasised the need for businesses to focus on sustainable practices and ensure that trade benefits all stakeholders, including vulnerable groups and women. Furthermore, they highlighted the role of the E-commerce Trade Commission in promoting these principles and driving positive change in the industry.

Another major concern addressed by the speakers was gender disparities in the e-commerce sector. They noted that women face challenges related to digital literacy, limiting their access to the digital world and hindering their participation in e-commerce opportunities. This disparity was further reflected in the lack of inclusive representation of women in businesses. The speakers argued that addressing these issues should be a priority to create a more equitable and inclusive e-commerce ecosystem.

Financial access was another significant hurdle discussed, particularly for women-led businesses. The analysis revealed that many women entrepreneurs struggle to secure the necessary finances to start or expand their businesses. This underscores the need for greater financial inclusion and support for women entrepreneurs in the e-commerce industry.

The rise of protectionism and barriers to free trade was also identified as a disheartening trend. The speakers expressed concern over countries implementing trade barriers, which restrict the movement of goods and services and hinder global trade. This protectionist approach was seen as detrimental to business growth and economic development.

On a more positive note, success stories like Amazon and Paytm were highlighted as examples of the transformative power of e-commerce. Amazon, with approximately 10 million suppliers globally, demonstrated the vast opportunities for businesses to achieve profitability and success through e-commerce. Paytm, in particular, was noted for bringing a revolution in India, enabling even illiterate shopkeepers to navigate digital transactions effectively.

The speakers recognised the important role played by the E-commerce Trade Commission in facilitating positive change in the industry. They applauded the Commission’s advocacy for open policies and support for businesses, as well as its collaboration with influential players in the e-commerce marketplace, such as Amazon, Alibaba, and Shopify.

Finally, the analysis highlighted the potential of the E-commerce Trade Commission to provide knowledge transfer and training workshops for young entrepreneurs. This was seen as an opportunity to equip aspiring business owners with the skills and information needed to succeed in the e-commerce marketplace.

In conclusion, the analysis shed light on various aspects of e-commerce and its implications for gender equality, business growth, and economic development. It emphasised the importance of sustainable supply chains, inclusive trade, and financial inclusion for women-led businesses. The role of the E-commerce Trade Commission as a catalyst for positive change was recognised, while the negative impact of protectionism on global trade was lamented. Success stories like Amazon and Paytm exemplified the potential of e-commerce, while the need for greater gender equality and access to digital literacy was underscored. Ultimately, the analysis highlighted the opportunities and challenges that exist in the evolving e-commerce landscape.

Daniele Tricarico

GSMA, the Global Association of the Mobile Industry, is actively involved in promoting digital, mobile-based solutions in low- and middle-income countries. Through partnerships with mobile operators and companies, GSMA works towards advancing innovative solutions that drive economic growth, improve connectivity, and enhance the quality of life in these regions.

To support its mission, GSMA has established the Mobile for Development foundation, collaborating with international donors like FCDO, Gates, and USAID. This collaboration allows GSMA to leverage resources and expertise to effectively address the unique challenges faced by these countries.

One notable initiative is GSMA’s partnership with the Department of Business and Trade of the UK government. Through this partnership, GSMA is conducting a study on e-commerce adoption by micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) across Africa. This research provides valuable insights into the barriers and opportunities for MSMEs to harness the potential of e-commerce, contributing to their growth and economic development.

The study also highlights the significant reliance on social media platforms for e-commerce activities by micro entrepreneurs, especially women-led MSMEs. This emphasizes the importance of upskilling and capacity-building programs to equip individuals with necessary business, technical, and digital skills to fully utilize e-commerce’s potential.

GSMA not only supports start-ups in developing e-commerce logistics and delivery solutions but also recognizes the potential of integrating delivery and financial services. An example is the partnership between Musanga, a company in Zambia, and a local mobile operator. This integration enables riders to provide financial services through mobile payments, enhancing convenience and reducing inequalities by expanding access to services.

Efficient last mile delivery is achieved by leveraging underutilized assets and existing infrastructure. For instance, Musanga utilizes motorbikes for delivery, while MTANI recruits retailers as pick-up points to address challenges with the postal system.

However, lack of trust remains a significant challenge in e-commerce adoption, particularly in emerging markets like Africa and South Asia. Issues such as fraud, informal arrangements, and payment concerns contribute to this lack of trust. Building trust through transparent and secure systems is crucial for widespread e-commerce adoption.

To effectively support MSMEs, GSMA emphasizes the need for greater coordination between the private and public sectors. Currently, efforts are fragmented across various initiatives from different development partners, making it challenging to identify priorities and implement cohesive strategies. Collaboration and partnerships are key in creating an enabling environment for MSMEs to thrive.

Additionally, GSMA recognizes the importance of effective implementation of digital trade policies at the local country level. Discussions on digital trade frameworks are taking place at regional and sub-regional levels, but it is essential to ensure that these policies are enforced in individual countries to maximize their impact.

Technological innovations play a vital role in the e-commerce ecosystem, particularly in areas like last-mile delivery and payments. Public-private partnerships are used to develop digital addressing systems, and the use of geodata and virtual addressing is growing. These innovations enhance efficiency and effectiveness, improving access to goods and services for consumers.

Innovations in business models are also crucial, especially in low- to middle-income countries. B2B solutions and shifts in the value chain help overcome challenges in reaching customers in the last mile. By serving independent traders and wholesalers, e-commerce platforms contribute to their growth and success.

E-commerce presents great opportunities for smallholder farmers, who can benefit from agri-commerce platforms connecting them with markets. These platforms have gained investor interest and confidence due to their functionality and market access enhancement for farmers.

In conclusion, GSMA’s efforts in advancing digital, mobile-based solutions in low- and middle-income countries demonstrate the potential of e-commerce to drive economic growth, improve connectivity, and enhance livelihoods. Upholding trust, coordination between sectors, capacity-building, and effective implementation of digital trade policies are essential for realizing the full benefits of e-commerce and fostering inclusive and sustainable development.

Marco Forgione

Cross-border trade offers numerous benefits to businesses, including increased sustainability, resilience, employment opportunities, innovation, and profitability. Supporting and professionalising cross-border trade is considered crucial in addressing global challenges. E-commerce can play a vital role in supporting micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in international trade. Online platforms and marketplaces can facilitate their participation by helping them overcome challenges.

Access to the Global South for ongoing trade with the Global North depends on supporting MSMEs and the informal sector in compliant cross-border trade. The UK has a high percentage of MSMEs, highlighting the importance of enabling their participation in international trade.

The E-Commerce and Trade Commission, within the UK’s Department for Business and Trade, brings together marketplaces and key actors to support MSMEs. Their efforts contribute to achieving Sustainable Development Goals related to decent work, economic growth, innovation, infrastructure, and partnerships.

The digitalization of MSMEs requires coordinated action between the private and public sectors. Addressing the lack of consumer trust and challenges related to social commerce is crucial. Upskilling and capacity building are essential for successful digitalization. Priority should be given to supporting women-led MSMEs and promoting gender equality.

However, the existing moratorium on digital trade poses challenges to the development of the Global South. Discussions on the moratorium at MC13 may further restrict digital trade. Solutions must be found to ensure equitable international trade opportunities.

In conclusion, cross-border trade, supported by e-commerce and collaboration between public and private sectors, is vital for sustainable economic growth, innovation, and employment. The E-Commerce and Trade Commission supports MSMEs in international trade. Digitalization requires capacity building and upskilling, with a focus on gender equality. Addressing the moratorium on digital trade is necessary for the development of the Global South. The summary should include long-tail keywords such as cross-border trade, MSMEs, e-commerce, sustainability, resilience, innovation, employment, and gender equality.

Jacqueline Jumah

The analysis of the provided statements reveals several key points regarding the development of digital trade and the challenges faced by MSMEs in Africa. Africa Nenda supports the development and scale of instant and inclusive payment systems across Africa, highlighting it as essential for promoting digital trade and enabling the success of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Africa.

However, there are challenges faced by MSMEs in Africa, particularly concerning business formalization, digital inclusion, and trade facilitation issues. Many MSMEs currently operate informally without registered businesses, making it difficult for them to engage in formalized payment systems along the supply chain due to a lack of necessary documentation. Additionally, poor digital infrastructure and a lack of devices further disconnect MSMEs from the digital economy. It is worth noting that MSMEs often resort to using personal bank accounts for business transactions, indicating a lack of proper financial infrastructure tailored to their specific needs. Moreover, trade facilitation issues at borders, involving bureaucratic procedures, controls, and bribery, act as deterrents for MSMEs to engage in cross-border trade.

The issue of informal addressing emerges as a challenge in the last mile delivery of e-commerce in Africa. Many Africans rely on landmarks, such as trees or the center street, instead of formal addresses, which poses difficulties for accurate and efficient delivery. However, a potential solution to this problem is presented: the use of digital financial services networks as delivery points. This solution is seen as an effective way to overcome the challenges of informal addressing by leveraging existing digital infrastructure and partnerships. Collaboration between e-commerce players and mobile money platforms enables the utilization of agent locations as delivery points. Technological advancements have also been made in geolocating agents and mapping their locations more accurately.

Collaboration is emphasized as crucial for progress in Africa, specifically in facilitating cross-border payments, which are essential for the success of MSMEs. African Nenda is facilitating collaboration to enable cross-border payments in alignment with the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA) protocol. They are working with the AFCFTA Secretariat to promote digital payments and facilitate digital trade, thus fostering economic integration and growth across the continent.

Policy harmonization is identified as another critical factor that authorities need to address to provide an open and level playing field for financial institutions. Harmonizing policies across the continent would facilitate an enabling environment for financial institutions to operate efficiently and securely. Active collaboration with the African Union (AU) is highlighted in advocating for policy harmonization, with efforts focused on introducing a regional FinTech licensing regime that enables the passporting of FinTechs to operate across different markets.

The importance of Fintech companies in facilitating e-commerce and MSME operations is acknowledged. Firms such as Wave and Data Mint play a crucial role by providing services like currency conversion, capacity building, and facilitating cross-border payments. Their contribution to the digital trade ecosystem enables MSMEs to thrive and expand their operations.

The role of mobile money and communication platforms, such as M-Pesa and WhatsApp, in driving the digital economy in countries like Uganda, Tanzania, and Kenya is emphasized. The wide adoption of mobile money for trade, combined with e-commerce providers linking their wallets to mobile money platforms, demonstrates the significant impact these technologies have on facilitating trade and financial transactions.

In conclusion, Africa Nenda supports the development and scale of instant and inclusive payment systems across Africa, while challenges faced by MSMEs include business formalization, digital inclusion, and trade facilitation issues. The adoption of digital financial services networks as delivery points presents a promising solution to the addressing problem in e-commerce. Collaboration, policy harmonization, and the role of Fintech companies and mobile money platforms are crucial in driving the digital trade ecosystem and supporting the growth of MSMEs in Africa.

Dmytro Tupchiienko

Dmytro Tupchiienko, an SME owner, is involved in the wholesale market of electronic and telecommunication equipment and parts. He operates a company consisting of two people, trading these goods from the UK to continental Europe. However, Brexit has posed significant challenges for cross-border trade in the MSME sector. Issues related to order fulfillment, delivery, and shipping have arisen due to the UK’s departure from the EU. Although the British-Ukrainian free trade agreement has had some impact on companies in this geographical area, logistical problems caused by Brexit remain unresolved, leading to overstocking or understocking issues that hinder meeting customer demands.

The UK banking system also faces inefficiencies due to its overlap with logistics and storage, as well as different time zones. Dmytro Tupchiienko highlights time constraints caused by HSBC’s front office in Kolkata, where customers often need to wait for about an hour online to solve problems. Moreover, UK banks have significantly reduced their branch presence, making it increasingly difficult for customers to resolve issues directly. For example, the next available appointment at HSBC Bank is in March 2024, illustrating the challenges faced by customers seeking face-to-face assistance.

In contrast, African companies have adopted innovative and efficient communication methods, particularly using WhatsApp, to address problems in an online regime. Inspired by this, it is suggested that UK firms incorporate similar approaches to improve communication efficiency and effectiveness.

Insurance companies in the UK also present challenges for businesses. Dmytro Tupchiienko notes that one company changed its requirements, making it impossible to continue working with them. This indicates that insurance companies in the UK frequently modify their criteria, making it challenging for businesses to work with them consistently.

To overcome inefficiencies and barriers in the current systems, innovative solutions are required. Dmytro Tupchiienko successfully renewed his insurance for his fleet and warehouse using an online approach, highlighting the potential benefits of innovative strategies in improving business operations.

The shifting sanctions environment and regulatory changes have posed additional challenges for businesses, particularly those involved in international trade. International couriers are demanding additional paperwork based on the countries through which products pass, leading to delays in order fulfillment. This necessitates involving multiple logistical providers to cope with the increased workload. Efficient systems and strategies are required to navigate this challenging environment and handle logistics while complying with regulations.

Dmytro Tupchiienko values his membership with the Institute of Experts, which provides networking opportunities, training, and visibility for career growth. He has experienced intellectual and financial benefits from his engagement with the Institute, indicating its significance in supporting professionals in their career development. He also highlights the positive impact of the Institute’s digital credentials, which provide validation and boost online visibility, thereby opening new opportunities.

In conclusion, Dmytro Tupchiienko’s experiences as an SME owner highlight the challenges faced by businesses in the UK, particularly in the areas of cross-border trade, banking, communication, insurance, logistics, and regulation. Innovative solutions, efficient systems, and strategies are needed to address these challenges and ensure the growth and success of businesses in these sectors. Additionally, membership with professional organizations, such as the Institute of Experts, and the adoption of digital credentials can provide valuable networking and visibility opportunities for professionals in the UK.

Kostas Rossoglou

Shopify, a well-known Canadian e-commerce brand, offers a wide range of technical solutions to address the challenges faced by entrepreneurs and SMEs. It serves as a one-stop shop for individuals aiming to create, manage, and expand their businesses. With its commitment to comprehensive assistance, Shopify provides solutions for setting up online stores, finding customers, marketing products, facilitating payments, and managing deliveries. Gender equality is a key priority for Shopify, as over 53% of businesses on their platform are run by women. These women-led businesses are also reported to achieve 5% higher profitability than average businesses. Shopify also recognizes the importance of localization for international success, providing merchants with tools and features to effectively tailor their services to local markets. The company identifies potential for e-commerce growth in regions such as the Middle East, Africa, Southern Europe, and Southeast Asia. They emphasize the rise of social e-commerce in Southeast Asia, where six of the fastest-growing emerging markets are located. Collaboration is another important aspect for Shopify, as they value the efforts of the UK Trade Commission and Southeast Asia’s emerging e-commerce sector. Shopify supports open trade policies and warns against digital trade protectionism, advocating for more open trade policies to sustain economic growth and reduce inequalities. Technology innovations, including artificial intelligence (AI), play a vital role in empowering entrepreneurs and overcoming challenges. Shopify has developed AI products to assist merchants, with success stories of entrepreneurs leveraging technology to expand their businesses. Sustainability is also a priority for Shopify, as they developed the “Planet” app, allowing merchants to offset carbon emissions generated from each sale. Overall, Shopify stands out as a comprehensive and supportive technology company, dedicated to solving the challenges faced by entrepreneurs and SMEs in the e-commerce sector, while promoting gender equality, localization, collaboration, open trade, technology innovations, and sustainability.

DT

Daniele Tricarico

Speech speed

173 words per minute

Speech length

1995 words

Speech time

691 secs

DT

Dmytro Tupchiienko

Speech speed

136 words per minute

Speech length

1265 words

Speech time

558 secs

JJ

Jacqueline Jumah

Speech speed

175 words per minute

Speech length

1703 words

Speech time

585 secs

KR

Kostas Rossoglou

Speech speed

193 words per minute

Speech length

1861 words

Speech time

578 secs

MF

Marco Forgione

Speech speed

145 words per minute

Speech length

1812 words

Speech time

752 secs

SK

Sangeeta Khorana

Speech speed

156 words per minute

Speech length

1339 words

Speech time

514 secs

Upholding interconnectivity and interoperability of digital solutions in a fragmented world (WCO)

Table of contents

Disclaimer: This is not an official record of the UNCTAD eWeek session. The DiploAI system automatically generates these resources from the audiovisual recording. Resources are presented in their original format, as provided by the AI (e.g. including any spelling mistakes). The accuracy of these resources cannot be guaranteed. The official record of the session can be found on the UNCTAD website.

Full session report

Hannah Nguyen

The ICC Digital Standards Initiative is an international collaboration between the public and private sectors, working towards digitising trade and supply chains. This initiative aims to promote the adoption, implementation, and capacity building of digital standards, as well as engage with the public sector on regulatory and institutional reform. By embracing digitalisation, trade processes can be transformed, leading to increased efficiency and reduced inequalities.

Legal and regulatory convergence, along with the development of taxonomy and standards, are crucial in facilitating digitalisation. It is important to ensure that regulations do not discriminate against digital systems, and that legal frameworks are harmonised to accommodate digital trade. The establishment of standard taxonomies promotes a common language for communication between businesses and governments, streamlining processes. Continuous capacity building is also vital to keep pace with the evolving digital landscape.

Surveys are being conducted to assess the current level of digitalisation of key trade documents. This exploration helps to identify the most commonly used data elements and components, in order to establish a global baseline for efficient data exchange. Establishing a common language for data exchange improves supply chain efficiency.

In the context of electronic commerce and digital trade, existing laws based on paper documents pose challenges. While some electronic versions of documents exist, their usage is limited due to non-acceptance at borders. The absence of explicit laws equating electronic and paper records functionally hinders the wider adoption of electronic versions. Governments should overhaul their legislative and legal systems to accommodate electronic transferable records, removing barriers to digital trade.

The adoption of the United Nations Model Law on Electronic Transferable Records could revolutionise digital trade. With the transformative impact already seen through the adoption of the UN Model Law on Electronic Commerce, extending it to electronic transferable records would provide a clear legal framework, promoting global acceptance and harmonisation.

In summary, the ICC Digital Standards Initiative is driving the digitalisation of trade and supply chains. Through regulatory reform and capacity building, they aim to create a more efficient and effective digital trade ecosystem. Legal and regulatory convergence, taxonomy and standards, and the adoption of international model laws like the United Nations Model Law on Electronic Transferable Records are fundamental in achieving this digital transformation.

Eunelyky Ndhlovu

The Zambia Revenue Authority is actively working on developing solutions to facilitate the exchange of information between customs administrations in the Southern Africa region. This effort is aimed at addressing several challenges, including undervaluation, misclassification, transit fraud, and border congestion. By exchanging data with neighboring countries, Zambia aims to enhance its ability to effectively mitigate these issues.

The authority recognizes the value of leveraging the World Customs Organization’s Global Network of Customs (GNC) tools to simplify the process of exchanging information. These GNC tools provide standards that enable faster and more efficient implementation of data exchange solutions. In line with this, the Zambia Revenue Authority has successfully developed a data exchange solution with Botswana in a relatively short time after the introduction of the GNC concept.

Looking ahead, the future plan of the Zambia Revenue Authority involves expanding the current data exchange solutions to other neighboring countries, such as South Africa. By extending these solutions, Zambia aims to strengthen cooperation and collaboration in the region, fostering improved customs administration practices. Furthermore, the authority plans to review the existing data exchange solutions with Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, aiming to enhance these connections as well.

Overall, the efforts of the Zambia Revenue Authority in developing and expanding data exchange solutions are positive steps towards enhancing trade facilitation, economic growth, and regional cooperation. By addressing key challenges and leveraging international standards, the authority is establishing a foundation for more efficient customs operations and improved information exchange in the Southern Africa region.

Juan Diego Chavarria

During the discussion, the speakers emphasised the significance of the World Customs Organization (WCO) data model in streamlining the movement of goods and information. The WCO data model acts as a customs IT language or dictionary of digital customs data. It allows customs departments to exchange information seamlessly, regardless of the technology being used. The model consists of various layers catering to specific processes and document requirements, enhancing efficiency in customs operations. This approach greatly contributes to the goal of SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure.

Another key topic discussed was the Globally Networked Customs (GNC) agreement, which enables efficient exchange of information between multiple customs members. GNC is based on a standardized approach, known as the Utility Block (UB), which facilitates the exchange of data. The UB serves as a template that promotes efficiency and consistency in the information exchange process. By implementing the GNC agreement, countries can industrialize their data exchange process, leading to the replication of successful solutions. This initiative aligns with SDG 16: Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions and SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure.

The speakers also highlighted the concept of Single Window Interoperability, which aims to foster collaboration among stakeholders involved in trade processes. This approach integrates different agencies, allowing for the seamless interchange of information. Implementing a standard ecosystem enhances communication and improves efficiency in trade-related operations. Additionally, the Single Window Interoperability concept is highly adaptable and can be replicated across various scenarios. This initiative is in line with SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals and SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure.

Furthermore, the discussion mentioned the collaborative efforts of the WCO with other international standard-setting organizations to support digitalization initiatives for cross-border procedures. The workshops organized by the WCO aimed to develop interoperable, efficient, consistent, and cost-effective data exchange solutions between countries. This cooperation contributes to the attainment of SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure and SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals.

Additionally, one of the speakers, Juan Diego Chavarria, showed support for the digitalization efforts of cross-border regulatory procedures. He acknowledged the benefits of implementing standardized tools and guidelines introduced by the WCO. These tools have facilitated the development of data exchange solutions between Zambia and its neighboring countries. Key benefits include accelerated processing time, reduced cases of undervaluation and misclassification, and access to advanced information for risk assessment.

The discussion also emphasized the importance of an inclusive work environment between different agencies for efficient data handling. Eric’s viewpoint on the significance of inter-agency cooperation was agreed upon, emphasizing the need for collaborative efforts in data exchange.

In terms of achieving interoperability and interconnectivity, the discussion mentioned the eFIDO hub as one approach among several possibilities. The eFIDO hub enables countries to exchange information seamlessly. However, it is worth noting that not all countries are currently utilizing the hub. The speakers expressed openness to exploring alternative solutions beyond the eFIDO hub to accommodate various legal requirements and preferences of different countries.

In conclusion, the speakers emphasized the importance of the WCO data model, the GNC agreement, Single Window Interoperability, and collaboration with international organizations for the digitalization of cross-border procedures. They stressed the benefits of standardization, inclusivity, and exploring different approaches to achieve interoperability and efficient data exchange. These initiatives align with multiple SDGs, including SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure, SDG 16: Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions, and SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals.

Audience

In the discussion, a neutral argument was put forward emphasizing the urgent need for legislation to keep pace with the rapid evolution of digitalization. It is stressed that the speed at which digitalization is advancing requires legislation to adapt and update promptly. Thus, there is a clear demand for faster legislation updates to effectively govern the constantly changing digital landscape and ensure that laws and regulations remain relevant and effective in addressing the challenges and opportunities brought about by digital transformation.

Additionally, the discussion highlights the significance of integrating the eFITO solution with the WTO data model to support SDGs related to zero hunger and industry innovation. The eFITO solution, which facilitates the exchange of information on plant protection products, should be seamlessly integrated with the WTO data model, serving as a reference framework for agricultural information exchange. This integration would greatly enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the eFITO solution in achieving the targets set by the SDGs.

The argument is supported by the establishment of an eFITO hub by the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC), serving as a central platform for global sharing of electronic phytosanitary certificates. This initiative showcases a commitment to leveraging digital technologies in the agricultural sector. However, it should be noted that efforts are still underway by the World Organization for Animal Health (WOA) to develop guidance on integrating digital technologies in agriculture, indicating ongoing work in this area.

The overall sentiment of the argument remains neutral, reflecting an unbiased and objective tone in discussing the need for legislative updates to keep up with digitalization. The discussion sheds light on the potential benefits that can be derived from integrating the eFITO solution with the WTO data model to support the SDGs. This analysis offers valuable insights into the current challenges and opportunities in regulating digital technologies in various sectors, particularly in agriculture and industry.

Erik Bosker

The analysis focuses on the importance of aligning customs data models and international guidelines to ensure efficient cross-border regulatory procedures. It highlights a positive sentiment towards closing the gaps in the digitalisation of these procedures and emphasizes the need to facilitate the exchange of electronic health certificates through a single-window environment.

The study reveals that a single-window approach streamlines border handling procedures and enables international level exchanges. It emphasizes the crucial role of collaboration between customs and competent authorities in achieving seamless data exchange. Sadly, there is a negative sentiment towards the lack of cooperation at the national level, which could hinder data exchange initiatives.

To overcome this challenge, the study suggests implementing a change for the successful implementation of a single-window environment. Information received about veterinary or food safety certificates should be shared with both customs and competent authorities to ensure a well-coordinated process.

The Codex, an international body responsible for setting food safety and quality standards, is highlighted for providing guidance and practicality through collaborations with the World Trade Organization (WTO). The adoption of a technology-neutral approach by the Codex could also benefit the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) in developing a data model that aligns with international guidelines while remaining adaptable to changing technologies.

Furthermore, the study explores the potential integration of the eFITO solution and the WTO data model. The eFITO solution, a hub linking with a generic national system, shows promise in connecting single windows with the hub. Integrating the eFITO solution and the WTO data model could serve as a supplementary tool in the cross-border regulatory process.

Overall, the analysis underscores the benefits and challenges associated with data exchange in cross-border regulatory procedures. It emphasizes the need for proper cooperation between customs and competent authorities at the national level, as well as the adoption of technology-neutral approaches. The study argues for the alignment of customs data models and international guidelines to ensure effective regulatory procedures. It also highlights the potential of the Codex and the eFITO solution in achieving these goals.

A

Audience

Speech speed

155 words per minute

Speech length

132 words

Speech time

51 secs

EB

Erik Bosker

Speech speed

114 words per minute

Speech length

1752 words

Speech time

920 secs

EN

Eunelyky Ndhlovu

Speech speed

152 words per minute

Speech length

2687 words

Speech time

1060 secs

HN

Hannah Nguyen

Speech speed

178 words per minute

Speech length

3948 words

Speech time

1331 secs

JD

Juan Diego Chavarria

Speech speed

159 words per minute

Speech length

5333 words

Speech time

2017 secs