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Latin America continues to suffer from an important lag in adopting ICT and technology more broadly. Although the region is vast and heterogeneous, three shared reasons for this lag can be identified: these countries all exhibit an insufficient investment in developing their ICT infrastructure, a weak skill base in the population because of poor educational systems that hinder society’s capacity to make an effective use of these technologies, and unfavorable business conditions that do not support the spur of entrepreneurship and innovation. Here goes a short analysis on the top 9 countries that are standing out in the Latam Region.

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  1. 1. HD ITC ADOPTION IN THE LATAM REGION -2013- - ITC ADOPTION -TOP 9 Countries IN THE LATAM REGION -2013- H D HDCG © February 2013 P age |1
  2. 2. ITC ADOPTION IN THE LATAM REGION -2013- ITC ADOPTION toward more knowledge-based activities. Information and communication technologies have an important role to play, IN THE both in reducing education’s costs and in organizational innovation to optimize the LATAM REGION allocation and distribution of human resources. 2013 1. Chile - 38th position: the country clearly depicts the strongest performance in Latin America. Benefiting from an entrepreneurial- Latin America continues to suffer from an friendly and well-functioning legal important lag in adopting ICT and framework, recent efforts to improve the technology more broadly. This is reflected in overall innovation system, while still the rankings, as no country manages to insufficient, have paved the way for this reach the top 30 and only a handful of small top position within the region. economies manage to be included among Notwithstanding these important merits, the top 50 the exceptions are Chile and the country still suffers from a series of Uruguay. Although the region is vast and weaknesses that do not allow it to heterogeneous, three shared reasons for benefit from the potential benefits of ICT this lag can be identified: these countries all and technology more broadly. Although exhibit an insufficient investment in its ICT infrastructure achieves good developing their ICT infrastructure, a weak scores in certain dimensions, notably skill base in the population because of poor mobile network coverage, the educational systems that hinder society’s technological preparedness of the capacity to make an effective use of these country is severely hindered by the technologies, and unfavorable business excessive costs of accessing ICT and conditions that do not support the spur of above all the poor quality of an entrepreneurship and innovation. educational system that requires Addressing these weaknesses will be improvement and that fails to provide crucial for improving the region’s the necessary skill base to fully optimize competitiveness and shifting its economies the use of ICT. Therefore, despite theHDCG © February 2013 P age |2
  3. 3. ITC ADOPTION IN THE LATAM REGION -2013- government effort to leverage ICT with intensive activities. Addressing these one of the widest offerings of online weaknesses would represent the next services in the world, the penetration step to fully leveraging ICT deployment rates in individual households still lags for competitiveness and social well- behind. In addition, the business being. community needs to invest in upgrading its capacity for innovation in order to facilitate the achievement of further 3. Panama and Costa Rica - 57th and economic impacts and shift the national 58th: both countries respectively, economy toward more knowledge clearly stand out from the rest of the intensive, higher-value-added activities. countries in Central America a region that suffers overall from an important connectivity lag, a low skill base, and 2. Uruguay - 44th place: Uruguay is weaknesses in its business one of the leading countries in the environment. Despite obtaining similar region that has recognized the scores and levels of ICT usage, importance of ICT. This process has Panama and Costa Rica face different been led by the government, which has challenges to improving their level of made important efforts to build a good preparedness to leverage ICT for ICT infrastructure in the country and competitiveness and well-being. In the grant wide access to ICT to school case of Panama while by regional pupils with its one computer per student standards the country benefits from a policy. Despite these efforts, the fairly good ICT infrastructure, especially technological readiness of the country in terms of international Internet still needs improvement, especially in bandwidth the very low skill base terms of raising the quality of the hinders its capacity to achieve higher educational system that presently ICT uptakes and stronger economic hinders the ability to seize the full impacts. Conversely, Costa Rica benefits of the opportunities that ICT benefits from a strong skill base thanks and technology more broadly, can offer. to a well-performing educational system, Moreover, weaknesses in the innovation but the country suffers from an ICT system, especially at the corporate infrastructure lag that thwarts its ability level, hamper the capacity of the country to achieve higher ICT uptake rates. In to move toward more knowledge- both cases, improving their overallHDCG © February 2013 P age |3
  4. 4. ITC ADOPTION IN THE LATAM REGION -2013- innovation systems would allow them to uptake. On the one hand, the benefit further from the ICT efforts and government offers a large number of contribute to shifting their economies public services online and the toward more knowledge intensive information it provides through its activities, especially in the case of websites encourages citizens’ Panama. participation. Moreover, Colombia benefits from a relatively skillful population. On the other hand, the 4. Brazil - 65th place: positioned country still suffers from important narrowly above the middle range of the challenges that hamper its capacity to ranking, Brazil benefits from strong leverage ICT to boost competitiveness levels of business ICT usage. These, and raise well-being. The lag in terms of combined with fairly advanced levels of ICT infrastructure and digital content, technological capacity in particular coupled with unfavorable framework segments of its industry, allows the conditions for entrepreneurship and country to achieve one of the strongest innovation, result in a low ICT usage by performances of ICT enabled businesses. In addition, the uptake of innovations in the region, both in terms ICT by individuals is still low, with less of new products and services and more than 20 percent of the population efficient processes. Notwithstanding accessing the Internet at home. these strengths, its overall business environment with its burdensome procedures to create new businesses 6. Mexico – 76th place:: the and its high tax rates, in addition to its government has made important efforts high mobile cellular tariffs and poor skill to increase the number of services availability, hinder the potential of the online and boost the e-participation of Brazilian economy to fully benefit from citizens through useful, high-quality, and ICT and shift toward more knowledge relevant websites that provide based activities at a faster pace. information, thus enhancing public governance. However, the country still faces significant weaknesses. An 5. Colombia - 73rd place: right below insufficient development of ICT the median, Colombia presents a mixed infrastructure, especially in terms of picture in terms of ICT development and international Internet bandwidth,HDCG © February 2013 P age |4
  5. 5. ITC ADOPTION IN THE LATAM REGION -2013- coupled with the high costs of order to further leverage ICT usage, telecommunications and poor reducing the high costs of accessing educational standards negatively ICT would be beneficial. In addition, influence the effective and productive addressing the enduring shortcomings use of ICT by individuals and in the political and regulatory businesses. Moreover, despite the environment as well as in the framework recent improvements that facilitate conditions to boost entrepreneurship entrepreneurship by reducing the and innovation would allow the country number of procedures and time to open to increasingly shift its economy toward a business, the functioning of some more knowledge-intensive, higher- public institutions and the development value-added activities. of a strong innovation system are still pending challenges to creating a conducive environment for higher ICT 8. Peru - 106th place: despite the impacts. Addressing these weaknesses economic growth, Peru has experienced in a holistic manner will determine the in the past year, at the country still lags success of the country in benefitting significantly behind in terms of ICT. An from the opportunities that ICT has to insufficiently developed and expensive offer. ICT infrastructure, coupled with a low- quality educational system hinders the preparedness of Peru to make an 7. Argentina - 92nd position: the effective use of ICT. As a result, the use country benefits from a fairly well of ICT by all three actors individual, developed ICT infrastructure, especially business, and government is still low, in terms of international Internet and despite relatively good framework bandwidth and high levels of adult conditions for entrepreneurship, the literacy that could pave the way to a potential economic impacts are not yet high and effective ICT uptake by all accruing. members of society. However, while ________________________________ individuals reach acceptable usage rates, businesses seem to lag behind, and the perception of the business Leave your questions and comments to: community is that the government is not prioritizing the use of ICT sufficiently. InHDCG © February 2013 P age |5