ICT Key to Economic Growth

| May 18, 2015

The Vice President, Mr Mokgweetsi Masisi, says information and communications technology (ICT) is a key component in diversifying and growing economies.

Speaking at the commemoration of the 150th World Telecommunications and Information Society day in Ghanzi on Saturday (May 16), Mr Masisi said in order for Botswana to change its fortunes, the country must tap into the power of ICT and develop explicit solutions aimed at transforming its socio economic landscape.

Botswana as a country, Mr Masisi noted, came far with ICT issues and had managed to catch the bandwagon towards knowledge economy through the use of ICT and that there had been a complete transformation in the country.

In 2007, he said, government approved the National ICT policy called Maitlamo to provide a clear and compelling road map for Botswana to drive social, economic, cultural and political transformation through effective use of ICT.

Furthermore, he noted that Botswana had embraced the use of ICT evolution by developing some initiatives that had brought transformations and also improving lives of people.

He said such initiatives, which had provided universal access to ICT included mobile network, Nteletsa 2, international connectivity, national optic fibre and backbone network as well as increasing digital literacy and promoting innovation in the country.

The Vice President also commended the Ministry of Transport and Communications for developing an ICT empowerment strategy for citizen, youth, women and people living with disabilities a strategy that would provide opportunities and platform for the disaantaged groups to demonstrate their capacity and capability in innovation, productivity and competitiveness through proper use of ICT.

The use of ICT, the Vice President said, had been of positive impact with thorough change from the government approach to public service delivery (e- government), enhancement of the private sector’s business operations by connecting potential buyers and supplier (e -commerce) down to societal interactions (social media).

Mr Masisi stressed on the use of ICT and said everyone should be engaged in ICT as it has become a powerful tool for the development of the society.

The use of ICTs aims at improving the welfare of societies in areas such as community development, poverty eradication, agriculture, healthcare, basic education, health-care amongst others, he said. By embracing ICT, Mr Masisi said as a nation Batswana would enjoy enhanced opportunities in generating income and combating poverty, ill health and illiteracy.

Commemorated under the theme ICTs- Drivers of Innovation, Vice President Masisi said the theme commands Botswana as a nation to focus her attention on the effective use of ICTs to bestow the country’s status of a knowledge economy that is depended and focused on data and information as tradable commodities.

He noted that there was need to strengthen the component of research and innovation in ICT. The evolution of ICT in transforming economies, he added is based on its innovative capacity.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: Business & Finance

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