Development - other


At the 13th Summit between the European Union and India, the two powers endorsed the EU-India Agenda for Action 2020The document, which aims to serve as 'a common roadmap to jointly guide and strengthen the India-EU Strategic Partnership in the next five years,' reaffirms a partnership in ICT. The roadmap seeks to 'create synergies between the 'Digital India' initiative and the EU's 'Digital Single Market',' in particular on 'economic and regulatory issues..., ICT standardisation [and] Internet Governance.' Furthermore, India and the EU agreed to work towards a Joint Declaration on 5G and share expertise in cybersecurity and infrastructure.
President of the European Council Jean-Claude Juncker and Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi also issued a Joint Statement, in which the two leaders committed to an 'open, secure and interoperable' Internet, 'governed through a multi-stakeholder approach,' along with the lines of cooperation mentioned in the Agenda for Action. More information can be found in the EU press release.

The Organization of American States and the Inter-American Development Bank have launched a comprehensive report, entitled Cybersecurity: Are We Ready in Latin America and the Caribbean?. The report consists of 'expert contributions' - a collection of essays on cybersecurity trends, including matters of privacy, trust, cybercrime, freedom of expression, capacity development, the digital economy and sustainability - as well as of 'country reports', which provide an overview of the state of cybersecurity in LAC countries. 

Technology covers an important part of India's Union Budget, which was presented by finance minister, Arun Jaitley, on Monday. Technology is seen as a social and economic booster, and will be used across sectors - 'be it to increase tax compliance and accountability with the help of data analytics, increase digital literacy, strengthen rural markets, improve agriculture, modernise ports and airports or to store digital documents.' The government plans to reduce the digital divide by providing digital devices and connecting about 60 million houses to the net. The expected increase in Internet users is also hoped to boost e-commerce.

As part of the Digital Single Market initiative, the EU has published the Digital Economy & Society Index (DESI) 2016. The DESI is structured around the factors 'connectivity', 'human capital', 'use of the Internet' and 'integration of digital technology' and 'digital public services'. The 2016 report shows that although the individual EU member states are 'progressing towards a digital economy and society', their level of development demonstrates significant levels of diversity. The countries 'running ahead' include Austria, Germany, Estonia, Malta, the Netherlands and Portugal, whereas Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Greece, France, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia are falling behind. 

Speaking at the Mobile World Congress, UN Special Advisor on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, David Nabarro, called on the mobile industry 'to work with Governments and the international community to expand connectivity, lower barriers to access and ensure that schools and applications are developed with vulnerable communities in mind.' He furthermore stressed the importance of closing the digital divide and the gender gap, the responsible use of data for humanitarian and development purposes, and the protection of privacy. 

During the Mobile World Congress (22-25 February in Barcelona), the GSMA releases a daily newspaper with all relevant information about the conference, as well as background articles. The issue of Monday 22 February includes articles on Mobile Connect availability, a new partnership between GSMA, Google and global operators, the development of 5G, smart cities, the Internet of Things, and many other topics.



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