As we mark in 2020 the 50th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum and 10th anniversary of the Broadband Commission,this special session brought together both communities to examine and identify new financing models that engage multiple stakeholders in the digital landscape, extending economic opportunities to all to make a societal impact.
It is also about empowering people through meaningful universal connectivity, ensuring that no one is left behind from the digital transformation process that is sweeping across societies, industries and sectors. It is to recall that without connectivity, there is no access to the digital society. Today, while more than 53% of the world population is online, 47% of the population still remains unconnected. To bring the next 4.4 billion people on the Internet by 2030, innovative and sustainable approaches have therefore to be found to support long term development and socio-economic growth.
The session addressed:
- How to balance return on investments requirements with financing digital connectivity for social impact?
- Sustainable financing for affordable inclusive connectivity: what are the incentives required to create a conducive environment to attract investment?
- What innovative financing models can be scaled up to expand digital infrastructure and extendmeaningful access for all?
- Innovative financial, business and policy solutions and mutlistakeholder
The agenda for the special session was as follows:
- Mr Houlin Zhao, Secretary-General, International Telecommunication Union (ITU) (Co-Vice Chair of BBCOM)
H.E. Ms Paula Ingabire, Minister of ICT and Innovation, Rwanda representing H.E.President Kagame (Co-Chair of BBCOM)
Dr Carlos Jarque, America Móvil, representing Mr Carlos Slim (Co-Chair of BBCOM)
Breakout Discussions on Key Themes
-Breakout Groups 1 – Financing for sustainability and social impact
Breakout Group A: Investment for social impact
Breakout Group B: Public-Private Partnerships for sustainability
-Breakout Group 2: Inclusive meaningful connectivity for a safe digital future
Plenary Discussion of group outcomes: Summary of discussions
- Mrs Doreen Bogdan-Martin, Director, Telecommunication Development
Bureau (BDT), ITU
- Mr Derek O’Halloran, Head of Shaping the Future of Digital Economy and New Value Creation, WEF
For updates from the meeting follow @UNBBCom and #Broadband,#ICT4SDG on Twitter.