Tech

Tech (443)

Algeria is stepping up initiatives to implement its "paperless" strategy to achieve a successful transition to paperless administration by 2029.

The Algerian education sector will undergo a series of digital reforms starting from the 2024-2025 school year, Education Minister Abdelhakim Belabed announced on Monday, April 8, during a working visit to Mostaganem.

The next school year will mark an unprecedented new digital era, following the complete digitization of all pedagogical, educational, administrative, and organizational operations in the education sector,” Belabed said.

The announced reforms include distance enrolment, particularly for the first year of primary school, set to launch on May 2, as well as guidance mechanisms and other programs to be announced shortly. The aim is to eliminate the need for parents to travel to school.

These reforms align with President Abdelmadjid Tebboune’s instructions to speed up the digitization process in key sectors, including education. In a national address in late December 2023, Tebboune spoke of completing the first phase of the digitization project by mid-2024.

The education sector, which is receiving special attention, will see ongoing digitization in areas such as re-registration, reorientation, and the use of school documents, which will be exclusively available on the Ministry’s digital platform. Additionally, 1,200 new schools will be equipped with electronic tablets.

Samira Njoya

Posted On jeudi, 11 avril 2024 15:57 Written by

The digital sector offers a wide range of employment opportunities for young people. By developing the necessary skills, they can seize these opportunities and improve their integration into the labor market.

 Orange Digital Center announced on Tuesday, a partnership with Coursera, a leading provider of open online courses. The collaboration aims to equip young individuals in Africa and the Middle East with crucial digital skills, free of charge and at their own pace.

“At Orange, we firmly believe that digital inclusion is the key to creating a fairer and more prosperous future for everyone. In partnership with Coursera and through the Orange Digital Centers, we are opening the doors of certification training to all our beneficiaries, offering educational and professional development opportunities to those who need them most,” said Asma Ennaifer, Executive Director CSR, Orange Digital Centers and Communications, Orange Africa and Middle East.

The partnership will enable young people to acquire knowledge in vital areas such as artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, digital marketing, and entrepreneurship via Coursera, a leading global online platform.

The initiative aligns with Orange’s commitment to equip young talent with the knowledge and skills necessary to enter the job market, advance their professional careers, or inspire them to become digital entrepreneurs. For Coursera, the partnership continues its mission to offer transformative learning experiences to learners worldwide.

The partnership comes at a time when digital skills are increasingly in demand, especially among young people, who make up 60% of all unemployed Africans, according to the World Bank. The training courses provided by the two partners aim to prepare these young individuals for the business world and job market.

Samira Njoya

Posted On mardi, 09 avril 2024 17:08 Written by

In 2023, sub-Saharan African countries lost nearly $1.74 billion due to Internet outages and restrictions on access to social networks. Despite these losses, governments continue to use this lever for a variety of reasons.

Voluntary internet blackouts in Sudan, Chad, Senegal, and Comoros resulted in a loss of $39.5 million in the first quarter of 2024, according to data aggregated by Internet Society Pulse.

In Senegal, internet blackouts on February 4-7 and 13 followed the postponement of presidential elections, leading to an estimated loss of $75,523. In Comoros, a blackout from January 17-19, following the re-election of President Azali Assoumani, resulted in a loss of $24,252.

The situation in Chad is more complex, with internet access being cut off since February 28 due to events such as the attempted assassination of Supreme Court President Samir Adam Annour, the assassination of opposition leader Yaya Dillo, and subsequent civil demonstrations. The blackout has already resulted in nearly $2.95 million in losses.

In Sudan, losses are estimated at $36.5 million due to disruptions in internet services amid escalating violence. Internet Society Pulse reports a drop in connections and traffic, with the two main internet service providers, Sudatel and MTN, which hold 53% and 21% of the market share respectively, having completely disappeared.

Additionally, the Amhara region of Ethiopia, home to over 40 million people, has been without internet access since August 3, 2023. This comes in the wake of conflict between the government and the nationalist and irredentist Amhara militia, known as the Fano, formed in the 2010s.

Adoni Conrad Quenum

Posted On mardi, 09 avril 2024 10:42 Written by

Since it arrived in Guinea in 2006, Huawei has contributed to the implementation of various digital projects. In the years to come, the government would like to benefit from its expertise once again.

The Republic of Guinea is turning to Huawei for assistance with several digital initiatives. On April 5, Rose Pola Pricemou (photo), the Minister of Posts, Telecommunications, and the Digital Economy, met with a delegation from Huawei in Guinea to discuss potential collaborations aimed at bolstering the nation’s digital infrastructure and fostering technological advancement.

The projects under discussion include training for those involved in computer systems modernization services (SMSI), strengthening the backbone, implementing the Guinea Safe City program, expanding Internet coverage to underserved rural areas, and organizing ICT Girls’ Day on April 25.

These initiatives, for which Guinea is seeking Huawei’s support, form a crucial part of the National Digitisation Strategy’s implementation, which aims to modernize the country’s administration and key sectors. Huawei has been a long-standing partner in this process, having been operational in the country since 2006. The company has spearheaded numerous projects, including the construction of 4,000 km of fiber optic cable, thereby contributing to the development of Guinea’s communications infrastructure.

With recent financial backing of $60 million from the World Bank, the Guinean government is hoping to ramp up its efforts in collaboration with Huawei. The government’s primary digital projects currently include the construction of a digital village, extension of the national fiber optic network, connection to new international fiber optic submarine cables, launch of the public telecommunications company Guinée Télécom, digitization of the administration and various public services, and provision of Internet connectivity to 300 schools and some universities.

Samira Njoya

Posted On lundi, 08 avril 2024 16:37 Written by

E-health provides much-needed services in Africa, particularly by extending healthcare provision to regions where health workers are scarce. However, challenges persist, including the need for better coordination of various initiatives.

The International Committee of Digital Health Experts in Africa (CEISNA) has partnered with the Higher Institute of Public Health in Bamako, Mali, to improve the country’s healthcare systems, according to an announcement made on April 6.

"In a country facing major health challenges, the involvement of the senior management of Mali's Institute of Public Health in this collaboration is not only remarkable but essential. This partnership clearly illustrates Mali's determination to promote the well-being of its population through digital innovation in health," says CEISNA in a press release.

The collaboration will see the implementation of targeted initiatives to strengthen local capacities, expand access to quality care, and leverage modern technology to serve the Malian population better. The partnership also plans to foster a synergy of expertise to stimulate the development of innovative digital health solutions, promote knowledge sharing, and launch projects aimed at transforming healthcare access in Mali.

The partnership aligns with the joint commitment of CEISNA and the Institut Supérieur de Santé Publique de Bamako to enhance Mali’s healthcare systems through digital technology. This comes as Mali is in the process of overhauling its healthcare system, with the National Strategic Plan for Digital Health 2024-2028 approved last December.

The collaboration is expected to herald a new era in the collective effort towards sustainable development and the promotion of public health in Africa, ultimately contributing significantly to the well-being of the people of Mali and the wider region.

Samira Njoya

Posted On lundi, 08 avril 2024 11:45 Written by

Africa, the world’s youngest and most vibrant continent, stands to leverage artificial intelligence (AI) for economic expansion. Yet, appropriate backing is required for the continent to harness this technology effectively.

China is eager to enhance its partnership with Africa in the realm of artificial intelligence (AI), the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) stated on Wednesday, April 3. The announcement followed the China-Africa Internet Development and Cooperation Forum, which took place in Xiamen, China, from April 2 to 3. 

The CAC statement outlined cooperation areas, including AI research, technological advancement, and its application in Chinese and African academic and research institutions. Key sectors such as agriculture, healthcare, education, and urban management will also be involved. The collaboration will extend to digital infrastructure development, talent exchange, capacity building, cybersecurity, and data protection. 

The declaration comes as African experts ponder the enormous opportunities that this technology could bring to the continent, provided the right policies and infrastructure are in place. According to a recent analysis by the US think tank Brookings Institution, only seven African countries have developed national AI strategies, and none have implemented formal AI regulation.

Collaborating with China, a country advanced in AI, could empower Africa to establish supportive policies and robust infrastructure, harnessing AI’s boundless opportunities and propelling its development. As per PwC’s Annual Global CEO Survey, AI could add $15.7 trillion to the global economy by 2030, with Africa potentially generating $1.2 trillion, signifying a 5.6% rise in the continent’s GDP by 2030.

Samira Njoya

 

Posted On vendredi, 05 avril 2024 09:37 Written by

In a bid to become a model of inclusive development via digital technology, the government of Madagascar is collaborating with both local and global partners. Several initiatives are currently in progress to achieve this goal.

Madagascar’s Digital Development, Posts and Telecommunications Minister, Tahina Razafindramalo, launched “Antananarivo 42”, a tuition-free institution aimed at equipping the youth with essential digital and programming skills, on Tuesday, April 2.

Backed by the Axian group, this initiative addresses Madagascar’s increasing demand for expertise in areas such as big data, artificial intelligence, web development, network and systems administration, and cybersecurity, as highlighted by the French embassy in Madagascar.

The inaugural batch of 196 students will undergo a three-year program, learning various programming languages and working on practical projects, often in partnership with associated companies. The objective is to effectively prepare them for the IT job market.

Official data indicates that the sector accounts for over 30,000 formal jobs in Madagascar, with the job market’s demands continually changing. Consequently, the Ministry of Digital Development, Posts and Telecommunications plans significant investment in digital profession training, including the imminent establishment of the National Digital Institute, projected to train over 3,000 individuals annually.

With the inauguration of Antananarivo 42, Madagascar joins Morocco as the second African country in the global 42 network. This network, initially established by French billionaire Xavier Niel, comprises 54 campuses across 31 countries, offering innovative, free programming and IT development training. The schools admit students without any diploma prerequisites or age restrictions.

Samira Njoya

Posted On jeudi, 04 avril 2024 13:02 Written by

Burkina Faso has been documenting internally displaced individuals for the past few months, with international allies like Japan providing support.

On April 2, the Japanese government donated digital equipment to the Burkina Faso Ministry of Solidarity, Humanitarian Action, National Reconciliation, Gender and Family. The donation aims to assist the government in the biometric registration of internally displaced persons (IDPs).

The Ministry of Humanitarian Action announced that the donation, valued at XOF93 million ($153,000), primarily includes 120 fingerprint sensors and 120 power banks. This contribution supports the implementation of the biometric registration system for IDPs, a project initiated in May 2019 to provide more reliable data and streamline aid efforts for displaced individuals.

With the backing of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the government has developed two applications for this initiative. The first application registers and fingerprints IDPs detects duplicate registrations, and offers accurate statistics on population movements and returns. The second application aids in the processing, analysis, and dissemination of registration data, thereby enhancing the management of IDPs.

The Japanese government’s donation is expected to facilitate Burkina Faso’s implementation of the IDP registration system and expedite its development through the use of digital technology. Official estimates suggest that the system and its deployment will exceed two billion CFA francs in costs.

Samira Njoya

Posted On jeudi, 04 avril 2024 12:56 Written by

Despite the launch of several investment vehicles at the start of the year, investment in African startups continued its downward trend in 2024, following a decline in funding in 2023 compared to 2022.

African startups raised a total of $466 million in the first quarter of 2024, marking a 47% decrease compared to the same period in 2023, according to data released on April 3 by Africa: The Big Deal, a database that tracks funding exceeding $100,000 raised by African startups.

The logistics sector, led by a significant deal involving Nigerian startup Moove, which received a $100 million investment from Uber, surpassed the fintech sector, raising a total of $151 million. Fintech followed closely with $105 million, while the agrifoodtech sector completed the top three with $50 million.

Notably, 87% of these funds were raised by startups from Nigeria ($160 million), Kenya ($108 million), South Africa ($72 million), and Egypt ($53 million). This group, known as the Big Four, continues to dominate the African investment market, while the consistent decline in funding since 2023 has not benefited other technology ecosystems on the continent.

Outside of the Big Four, only four other African countries - Uganda ($16 million), Ghana ($10 million), Tanzania ($9 million), and Morocco ($7 million) - managed to attract more than $5 million in the first quarter of the year.

Adoni Conrad Quenum

Posted On mercredi, 03 avril 2024 14:28 Written by

Guinea's government is pursuing initiatives to expand high-speed internet access across the country. These efforts may be bolstered by support from partners like the World Bank.

Guinea is set to be connected to a second subsea cable, as announced by Rose Pola Pricemou, the country’s Minister of Posts, Telecommunications and the Digital Economy, on March 26. The move is part of the Western Africa Regional Digital Integration Program (WARDIP), aimed at strengthening Guinea’s digital sovereignty.

Currently, only one subsea cable connects Guinea to the rest of the world. Through the WARDIP project, we will gain a second subsea cable. It is unacceptable that in 2024, people in the most remote villages cannot access basic social services digitally. Literacy should not be a prerequisite to benefit from public services,” Pricemou said.

The government first revealed its intention to connect to a second undersea cable in February 2022 to bolster the country’s high-speed telecoms infrastructure. Since 2014, Guinea has relied mainly on the ACE (Africa Coast to Europe) cable for broadband services. However, recurrent failures on this infrastructure have disrupted internet service in the country, necessitating a second cable.

The World Bank will finance the future infrastructure under the WARDIP program. In December, the government secured $60 million to enhance internet access. According to the 2022 annual report of the local telecom regulator, ARPT, Guinea has 6.98 million mobile internet subscribers, with a penetration rate of 52%.

The deployment of this second cable is expected to not only boost infrastructure capacity through additional connectivity but also extend these services to millions more people and reduce costs. The project aligns with the government’s digital transformation ambitions.

Samira Njoya

Posted On mardi, 02 avril 2024 16:19 Written by
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