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ICTs and entrepreneurship in ACP countries


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  • 1. ICTs andentrepreneurshipin ACP countriesby Michael Hailu, Director of CTA ACP-EU JPA Economic Committee Brussels, 22 March 2012
  • 2. About CTA• CTA is a joint international institution of the ACP Group of States and the EU. We operate under the framework of the Cotonou Agreement.
  • 3. CTA’s Mission• To  advance food and nutritional security  increase prosperity  encourage sound natural resource management• by  providing access to information and knowledge  facilitating policy dialogue and  strengthening the capacity of agricultural and rural development institutions and communities in ACP countries
  • 4. CTA Strategic Priorities• To support well informed, inclusive agricultural policy processes and strategies that empower smallholder producers, women and youth• To promote the development of priority value chains, especially for smallholder producers• To strengthen the information, communication and knowledge management capacities of institutions and networks
  • 5. Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs)• ICTs are a complex varied set of goods, applications and services used for producing, distributing, processing and transforming information• Examples: telecoms, TV and radio, hardware and software, computer services, electronic media, online services, web 2.0 applications, Geographic Information Technologies, ...
  • 6. ICT Growth in Developing CountriesSource: IMF, WP/11/73, 2011
  • 7. Trends in Fixed versus Mobile Phone Subscribers: International ComparisonSource: IMF, WP/11/73, 2011
  • 8. The transformative potential of ICTs• ICTs have opened up a wide range of opportunities• ICTs conducive to private sector development• Private sector puts greater emphasis on sustainable innovation• ICTs favour the development of economic activities in rural areas• Youth is fascinated by ICTs
  • 9. Economic development from ICT investment• Growth is linked to ICTs in developing countries (except in countries with restricted telecoms) UNCTAD 2011  crowd-sourcing for pest control (e.g. PestNet, Pacific)  mobile financial services (M- PESA, Kenya)
  • 10. Economic development from ICT investment • Market information service (MIS) provides price information and a virtual marketplace for buyers and sellers of agricultural commodities (Esoko, RESIMAO)
  • 11. Constraints for ICT development• Lack / irregular broadband connectivity• Irregular / insufficient power supply• Lack of ICT infrastructure• Lack of enabling regulatory environments• Lack of awareness and skills• Lack of systematic, evidence-based impact evaluations regarding the use of ICTs to promote enterprise development• Maintenance issues (e.g. SAT 3)
  • 12. Constraints for “doing business”Problem areas• Procedures for starting a business• enabling legal and regulatory environments• needed expertise• access to credit• power supply
  • 13. CTA contribution
  • 14. Encouraging young entrepreneurs• Identification and promotion of young entrepreneurs through the CTA and NEPAD essay competition on ICT and agriculture (ARDYIS)• YoBloCo awards: competition for young bloggers
  • 15. Encouraging entrepreneurs• Supporting women initiatives on ICT in agriculture (Genardis, three editions)• Community Information Centres supporting youth entrepreneurship
  • 16. Empowering communities• Participatory GIS (PGIS)• Participatory Video (PV)• Online advocacy
  • 17. Capacity building across ACP
  • 18. Measuring impact• Web 2.0 for Development initiatives (2007-today)• Impact assessment (2008-2010)  54 % response rate out of 490 survey respondents  30 % women  38% youth (18-35 years of age)• Adoption: highest among young (< 36 y) Anglophone women
  • 19. Impact on work performance• Improved  access and retrieval of information 88%  information sharing: 85%  social networking: 80%  information management 59%
  • 20. Impact on corporate environment• Increased no. of communication channels used 62%• Timely delivery of up-to-date and relevant information to beneficiaries : 44%• Increased visibility on the internet: 44%• Mainstreamed web 2.0 across operations: 40%• Decreased communication costs: 31%• Increased interaction with partner organisations: 31%
  • 21. Impact on ultimate beneficiaries• Improved information sharing: 64%• Improved work practices: 39%
  • 22. Way forward ...
  • 23. Policy recommendations• Support  the establishment or improvement of enabling regulatory environments• Promote  affordable access to relevant ICTs  dialogue between regulators, government and telecom operators to stimulate investment in rural areas• Upscale  best practices at a levels which can contribute to sustainable rural economic growth
  • 24. Policy recommendations• Support the mobilisation of venture capital for ICT-based entrepreneurship• Include ICT in business skills training (focus on youth and women)• Support the improvement and implementation of universal access to ICTs strategies for rural areas in particular (universal access funds, etc.)• Strengthen organisations working on ICTs for farmers• Favour the establishment of ICT innovation hubs
  • 25. Thanks you