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Digital identity key to digital development, reaching UN goals among small island developing states

Digital identity key to digital development, reaching UN goals among small island developing states
 

A project is targeting digital identity, e-commerce and statistics gathering as a way to promote digital development and economic growth and as steps towards meeting the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

UNCTAD – the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development – has created a blended learning strategy to boost the digital economy in Small Island Developing States (SIDS) as part of its TrainForTrade program.

Training and support across digital identity, e-commerce and statistics across public and private sectors and to inform the drafting of new laws. It will take place via online courses, hybrid conferences and co-working sessions. It will run until 2025 when it finishes with presentations from the states involved.

“An adequate legal framework and digital identity system are needed to facilitate the uptake of e-commerce and the transition to a digital economy,” said Shani Griffith-Jack, first secretary at the Permanent Mission of Barbados to the UN in Geneva and previous chair of the SIDS group.

The “digital identity for trade and development” component of the program is intended to increase knowledge on methods of implementing e-commerce at the policy level, and for small and medium-sized enterprises. It will help participants evaluate the risks surrounding authentication.

Topics include the fundamental concepts of digital identity, data protection, governance and ID technology. The targets are the ministries in charge of e-commerce; telecommunication/ICT; trade; revenue, tax and finance authorities.

“The lack of official national statistics on information technology use and e-commerce constitutes a handicap for the formulation and evaluation of digital development policies,” said Griffith-Jack on the third element of statistics gathering.

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