WGS 2018: United Nations E-government Roundtable Explores Effective Frameworks to Enhance Digital Economy in the Arab World

WGS 2018: United Nations E-government Roundtable Explores Effective Frameworks to Enhance Digital Economy in the Arab World

Dubai-UAE: – Internet usage, big data, cybersecurity, business usage of ICT and the empowerment of citizens across the Arab world were some of the key themes explored at the E-government Roundtable, held as part of the sixth World Government Summit (WGS 2018) in Dubai today.

The event was led by experts from the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), showcasing its efforts to support the enhancement of an innovative and progressive digital Arab region.

Delegates explored the impact of the digital economy on men and women across the Arab region, identifying usage, impact and gender gaps that governments need to address as part of a digital transformation. Participants discussed the regulatory frameworks currently in place to support innovation in technology. Cooperation and coordination across the region were highlighted as critical aspects in the enhancement of the digital regional economy.

Karim Khalil, Secretary of the Commission at ESCWA, led the discussions and outlined suggestions in terms of training provided by its ‘Open Government’ initiative: “We are committed to helping establish and support effective frameworks whereby e-government services can be effectively rolled out as part of a wider ICT strategy, something the UAE is driving extremely well. But it is not a one-size-fits-all approach – each country across the Arab world and its respective governments are at different stages in the continuum of effectively embracing the digital economy.”

He added: “We will be hosting open government training sessions in MENA and across the GCC region, with leading experts providing advice on policy development and tools for effective measurement of success. Cooperation with member states is critical to our work, helping us to accurately define and understand country-specific national needs. What will be important moving forward in the Arab world is the creation of a more level playing field in terms of the digital landscape.”

Headquartered in Beirut, Lebanon, ESCWA provides a framework for the formulation and harmonization of sectoral policies for member countries, a platform for congress and coordination and a hub of expertise and knowledge. It is one of five regional commissions under the administrative direction of the United Nations Economic and Social Council, promoting economic and social development of Western Asia through regional and sub-regional cooperation and integration across its 18 member states.

Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the World Government Summit 2018 runs from February 11 to 13 at the Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. The landmark event convenes more than 4,000 participants from 140 countries, including heads of state and governments, as well as top-tier representatives of 16 international organizations.

Hosting more than 130 speakers across 120 interactive sessions, WGS 2018 features six distinct forums that examine the challenges of vital sectors for the future with a view to finding the best resolutions for the greater global good. Furthermore, over 20 specialized global reports spanning key sectors and topics of the summit are being launched during the event.


About the World Government Summit

The World Government Summit is the primary global forum dedicated to shaping the future of governments worldwide. Each year, the summit sets the agenda for the next generation of governments with a focus on harnessing innovation and technology to solve universal challenges facing humanity. The World Government Summit is a knowledge exchange platform that converges governments, futurism, technology and innovation. It functions as a thought leadership and networking hub for policymakers, experts and pioneers in human development. As a gateway to the future, the summit analyzes trends, issues and opportunities that humanity is likely to face in the coming decades, while showcasing innovations, best practices and smart solutions that inspire creative ideas on how best to address them.

© Press Release 2018

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