KATHMANDU, July 27: There is a need for cross collaboration to lower the costs of rural area connectivity and improve digital literacy to close the digital divide and progress on recovery of the economy affected by the COVID pandemic.
Experts opined this view at a webinar entitled “Strategies for Addressing the Asia-Pacific Digital Divide - Increasing Connectivity to Drive Economic Recovery” recently organized by the Financial Times and Huawei.
The Asia Pacific is speeding up digital transformation and is underpinned by dynamic markets and young population. The significant rift of digital access yet hinders wider shares of digital benefits, which in turn leads to slower recovery from the pandemic. In this context, information and communications technology (ICT) leverages fundamental ways to drive an economic rebound.
“This starts with fair access to digital services specifically on connecting the unconnected”, said Michael Macdonald, Chief Digital Officer of Huawei Asia Pacific, who conveyed Huawei’s agenda on consolidating three major pillars to tender digital divide in the region: ICT connectivity, talents’ vitality and green technology.
To reach underdeveloped areas and improve digital coverage, Huawei initiates the RuralStar program together with local operators globally including in Thailand and Indonesia since 2017. This solution replaces traditional towers with simple poles, enabling a shift from diesel generator power to solar power. By the end of 2020, the RuralStar program had been implemented in over 60 countries, with 50 million people benefited from this initiative.
Founded in 1987, Huawei is one of the leading global providers of ICT infrastructure and smart devices. It operates in more than 170 countries and regions serving more than three billion people around the world, reads a press statement issued by Huawei.