Digitalization has in the past few years enabled developing countries in particular to leapfrog on financial inclusion. Countries like Kenya, Ghana, Rwanda and Tanzania have made great advances in connecting their citizens to financial systems by leveraging on mobile phone technology. […]
Small and medium-sized enterprises dominate the business landscape in the Middle East and North Africa region. These enterprises account for more than 90 percent of the region’s businesses and, in some countries, contribute as much as 50 percent of employment and 70 percent of GDP.
Yet they face impediments to growth, and their contribution to employment is below potential. In much of the region, small and medium-sized enterprises are handicapped by limited access to credit, unfavorable business environments, and talent gaps.
Digital technologies present new opportunities for these businesses to achieve faster growth. Emerging technologies and broadband internet can facilitate operational efficiencies, innovation, access to markets and finance, and can enable firms to operate remotely during lockdowns. The flexibility of remote working can help integrate women and youth in the labor market.
But so far, small and medium-sized enterprises in the region have been slow to embrace digital technologies and e-commerce, and businesses trail governments and consumers in internet usage.
As consumers rapidly shift to online shopping and increasingly prefer rapid and convenient services, smaller businesses will need to adopt digital solutions to remain competitive and survive.
Because small and medium-sized enterprises […]
November 16, 2018
The way we work is changing at an unprecedented rate. Digitalization, artificial intelligence, and machine learning are eliminating many jobs involving low and middle-skill routine tasks through automation. […]
September 26, 2018
A driver from the Malaysian ride-hailing tech startup, Grab, picks up a passenger in Jakarta, Indonesia: digitalization is transforming Asia’s businesses and governments (photo: Afif C. Kasuma/iStock by Getty Images)
Asia’s digital revolution shows no signs of slowing down. From e-commerce giants like China’s Alibaba and Japan’s Rakuten, to ride-hailing, and digital payment tech startups, like Indonesia’s Go-Jek and India’s Paytm, and the widespread use of industrial robots for manufacturing, digitalization is changing the way the region’s businesses operate. […]
September 25, 2018
The countries of Southeast Asia are young—more than half of its 643 million people are under 30— and together they live in an economy of $2.8 trillion. […]
September 14, 2018
Estonians jokingly refer to themselves as e-Estonians, says Siim Sikkut, Estonia’s Chief Information Officer. But if ever a nickname were spot on, this might be it. […]
August 29, 2018
With about 1 million robots in use in Asia, robotics and automation mean economic risks and growth opportunities for the region. […]