Somalia signs IT cooperation agreement with the ITU

By : Adoni Conrad Quenum

Date : vendredi, 10 novembre 2023 16:53

Following years of political instability, Somalia is gaining attention for the concerted efforts undertaken by authorities to foster the country's development. These efforts are notably evident in the technology sector.

On Tuesday, November 7, the Somali Ministry of Communications and Technology announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding with the International Telecommunication Union at the 2023 edition of the ITU Regional Development Forum for Arab States in Manama, Bahrain. The aim is to advance digital development, ICT policies, cybersecurity, capacity building, digital infrastructure strengthening, and connectivity in the country.

 "The Government of Somalia is strengthening cooperation with the ITU. This agreement will be used to promote the Modernization and Transformation Process in Somalia, which aims to build and foster change that leads to sustainable development. Technology and Digital are the basis," said Jama Hassan Khalif, Somali Minister of Communications and Technology.

Despite a challenging political and security context, Somalia is doing everything necessary to get on board the digital revolution underway on the continent. The country intensified its efforts in recent years, in line with its 2019-2024 ICT Policy and Strategy, and various technical and financial partners are stepping in to support local authorities.

In October 2022, the European Union, Expertise France (EF), the German Agency for International Development Cooperation (GIZ), and the International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP) launched the €11 million "Digital for Development - D4D" program to support the digital transformation of several countries in the Horn of Africa, including Somalia. Last September, it launched a consultation for the future deployment of fifth-generation Internet in the country and also launched its national identification system.

With less than 2 million Internet users and a penetration rate of 9.8%, this new agreement should help, among other things, to reduce the digital divide and promote technological progress in the country. The country is still one of the continent's poor performers in terms of e-government, according to the 2022 edition of the report "E-Government Survey 2022 The Future of Digital Government" by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA).

Adoni Conrad Quenum


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