New Delhi (ABC Live): World Bank Report 2017 : Digital technologies are rapidly changing the way people, businesses, and governments communicate, transact, and access services and information.
The digital economy is becoming a critical driver of economic growth, investment, and job creation, so the adoption of digital technology by traditional industries is important for improving productivity and opening access to new markets.
The World Bank supports countries and their citizens as they take advantage of these opportunities. This support includes expanding affordable Internet access to the more than 4 billion people who remain unconnected, developing digital infrastructure, and building the digital skills and institutions necessary to participate in the digital economy.
In October 2016, the Bank launched a new Digital Development Partnership (DDP) with participants from the public and private sectors to operationalize the lessons of the World Development Report 2016: Digital Dividends.
The DDP will help to close the global digital divide to ensure that everyone can reap the economic and social benefits of connectivity.
The IDA-financed Regional Communications Infrastructure Program has supported nine countries in eastern and southern Africa, which have significantly increased access, improved quality, and lowered the cost 18 THE WORLD BANK ANNUAL REPORT 2017 of international connectivity by as much as 90 percent through market competition reforms and thousands of kilometers of network infrastructure investment.