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Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia ESCWA

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Dubai 2001. 3. Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member Countries ... Dubai 2001. 4. Access to New ICTs ... Dubai 2001. 12. Access to conventional ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia ESCWA


1
Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia
(ESCWA)
  • Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
    Countries
  • Omar Bizri
  • Technology Section
  • SIPD/ESCWA
  • Presented at
  • The Public Voice in Emerging Market Economies
  • Dubai, UAE
  • 15 January, 2001

2
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
  • Table of contents
  • Access to New ICTs
  • Access to conventional communications modes
  • Obstacles facing dissemination of new ICTs
  • Issues for short- and medium-term action
  • Policy and institutional initiatives
  • Long-term action
  • ESCWA work on new ICTs
  • Database on telecommunications contracts
  • Tables

3
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Access to modern information and communications
technologies (ICTs) in the ESCWA member countries
is still at an embryonic stage. In many ESCWA
countries, the availability of PCs and access to
the Internet are inadequate for making a
difference in many areas of application.
4
Access to New ICTs PCs per 1000 inhabitants
(1999, based on ITU data published in 2000)
5
Access to New ICTs 1 0 Internet users per 1000
inhabitants 1999 (ITU) and 2000 (DIT) data
6
Access to New ICTs Top-level domain names
(July 2000 data published by ISC)
7
Access to New ICTs Cellular phone subscribers
per 1000 inhabitants (1998 UNDP and 1999 ITU data)
8
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
The following chart provides a more detailed
picture of Internet users and top-level domain
names in the ESCWA member countries.
9
Sources 1999 (ITU) and 2000 (DIT) data
10
Source ISC July 2000 data
11
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Conventional modes of communication and
information dissemination do not fare a lot
better. They too, are less accessible than in
other regions/countries
12
Access to conventional communication modes
aggregate values Printing and writing paper
consumption in kg/capita (1997 UNESCO data)
13
Access to conventional communication modes
aggregate values Fixed telephone lines per 100
inhabitants (1998 UNDP and 1999 ITU data)
14
Access to conventional communication modes
aggregate values Television sets per 100
inhabitants (1996-1998 data by UNDP/UNESCO)
15
Access to conventional communication modes
aggregate values Radio sets per 100
inhabitants (1997 data by UNESCO)
16
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
The following chart presents a more detailed view
of country TV and radio dissemination.
17
Sources 1996-1998 data by UNDP and UNESCO
18
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
As for the future Many obstacles face wider
dissemination of new ICTs. Infrastructure
inadequacies High costs Inadequate awareness of
benefits Education and literacy related
problems. Last but not least, there are often
language, cultural and political impediments.
19
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
  • Web Sites in the Arab World
  • Nearly 18,000 Arab sites at the end of 1999 out
    of more than 10M sites around the world, up from
    8,000 in 1998
  • Around 4,000 web sites had Arabic texts in 1999
    up from 1,200 in 1998
  • Intellectual Property Rights are at stake
  • Source DIT net (www.dit.net)

20
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
  • E-Commerce
  • E-commerce evolving very rapidly in the world
  • B2B - worldwide 45B (1998) ? 3.2T (2003)
  • B2C - US 20B (1999) ? 185B (2004)
  • B2B reduces prices 4 average, 40 electronics,
    14 automobile
  • B2C volume Computer 7.5B (9.3), Travel 7.3B
    (2), Financial brokerage 5.8B (15.2)
  • Companies turning virtual Cisco e-commerce
    revenues 10B (1999)
  • Still very limited in the Arab world
  • Source The Economist, 26June 1999 and 26
    February 2000

21
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
  • E-Commerce in ESCWA countries
  • E-stores exist in UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Egypt and
    Lebanon
  • Online transactions reached nearly US100M in
    1999 up from US11.5M in 1998
  • Advertisement in 1999 reached about 1M up from
    US120,000 in 1998
  • Most of the transactions are carried out in the
    Gulf countries
  • Source DIT net (www.dit.net)

22
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
  • E-Banking in ESCWA countries
  • E-banking / Internet banking is carried out
    through Secured Electronic Transaction (SET)
  • E-banking is gaining ground in UAE, Kuwait, Qatar
    and Lebanon
  • Legal aspects are still at an elementary stage

23
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Clearly a lot has to be done if one is to rely
on modern ICTs for future socioeconomic
development. Further liberalization
(progressing very slowly in many countries of the
region) may be expected to produce positive
changes. But by then …
24
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
What is to be done? In the short- and
medium-term responses are needed at the level of
policy and institutional initiatives.
25
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
  • Policy initiatives
  • Objectives of governmental and institutional
    policies should include
  • accelerating the dissemination
  • promoting strategic applications.
  • To do so, policies should address the need to
  • improve infrastructures
  • reduce barriers (of numerous kinds)
  • create a conducive climate for private
    enterprise and for popular participation.

26
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Institutional initiatives Should have aims that
take into account demand in priority areas and
should help respond to local issues, ensuring
good value for money. Institutional initiatives
are often launched through joint
government/enterprise efforts and aided by
national, regional and international
organizations.
27
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Policy initiatives Policies by governments and
civil society institutions could make a huge
difference for enhanced penetration and
dissemination of crucial applications within
frameworks that respect good governance, and
human rights. But, to devise useful policies
there is need for accurate and detailed
information.
28
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
More detailed information is needed on a number
of issues, including Internet use patterns the
needs and behavior of present and potential
users strategies of main players etc.
29
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Obtaining such information is not easy. It is
costly. It poses political problems in
some countries. Areas where cooperative
multi- organizational efforts would pay off.
30
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
There is also need to acquire information
about new technology trajectories recent
experiences of other developing and developed
countries. And to render such information
available to the decision makers and to civil
society institutions at large enhance
awareness of the general public.
31
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
  • Research is needed to find out
  • what particular area of ICT capacity building,
    and what ICT applications, might best catalyze
    and accelerate progress
  • where a breakthrough might produce best value
    for money.

32
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Institutional initiatives Research and
technology parks (technopoles) including
incubation schemes are among such
initiatives. Government-University-Business
alliances (not only national but also regional as
well as international) should exert positive
influences.
33
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Longer-term efforts are needed to tackle issues
pertaining to cultural and social impediments.
Though difficult, these will probably relent to
action at the policy level as well as to focused
initiatives. Proactive approaches are needed
with greater emphasis on content and demand
creation.
34
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
Focusing on certain key applications (e.g.
e-government, distance education, etc.) stands a
good chance of catalyzing and accelerating change
in a variety of ways. Policies and
institutional initiatives should be designed to
address capacity building in such application
areas.
35
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
ESCWA proposes to act along these lines within
its present and future work programmes. The
Technology Section in cooperation with other
ESCWA substantive sections is conducting a number
of activities within its present and future work
programmes with the aim of instituting such
policy and institutional initiatives.
36
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
ESCWA is providing assistance to a number of
countries in the formulation of their own IT
strategies. Additionally, a special ESCWA
initiative was launched in November 2000 with the
aim of establishing a series of technology parks,
technology incubators and high-tech clusters in
the member countries.
37
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
ESCWA is part of the United Nations system. It is
accountable to the Economic and Social Council of
the United Nations and to a biannual council of
ministers concerned with socioeconomic
development in the member countries. ESCWA has
built expertise and credibility in the region as
an impartial agent for development and a vector
for change. Restructuring efforts that took
place in the nineties has contributed enormously
to its present capabilities.
38
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
  • ESCWA credibility is particularly noted in
    relation to national policy and institutional
    strategy formulation in areas such as
  • technology acquisition with particular emphasis
    on new technologies (ICTs, in particular)
  • harmonization of standards and norms in a number
    of areas including industrial development,
    transport issues, etc.
  • womens development
  • improving the performance of private enterprise.

39
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
At the Technology Section, we maintain a database
on ICT contracts concluded by the member
countries. An overview of patterns exhibited by
these contracts over the period 1992 - 2000 is
included in the following table and charts.
40
Access to ICT Technologies in the ESCWA Member
Countries
One word of warning is due in reference to the
following tables! For several reasons,
information contained in the database is not
complete! (We estimate that figures for a mere
60-75 of the total are included) They are,
nevertheless, useful in that they indicate
certain trends and cross-country differences.
41
Number and values of IT and telecommunications
technology transfer contracts in the ESCWA member
countries during the period 1992-2000
Source MEED 92-00
42
Expenditure on IT and telecommunications in the
ESCWA member countries during the period
1992-2000
Source MEED 92-00
43
Per capita value of expenditure on IT and
telecommunications in the ESCWA member countries
during the period 1992-2000
US Mil
US
Source MEED 92-00
44
Sources DIT 2000, ITU 2000, ISC 2000, UNDP 2000
45
Sources ITU 2000, UNESCO 1999, UNDP 2000
46
Sources DIT 2000, ITU 2000, ISC 2000, UNDP 2000
47
Sources ITU 2000, UNESCO 1999, UNDP 2000
48
Sources DIT 2000, ITU 2000, ISC 2000, UNDP 2000
49
Sources ITU 2000, UNESCO 1999, UNDP 2000
50
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