Many developing rural communities within Asia-Pacific Countries have inadequate access to Internet, digital products and services as well as the transport system, and public utilities, in comparison to urban areas and rural communities in advanced Asia-Pacific countries. In this regard, the COVID-19 pandemic has clearly demonstrated the linkage between digitalization, transport connectivity and sustainable development.
In consideration of the above, ESCAP is implementing a project funded by the United Nations Development Account-14 tranche, with an objective to strengthen the capacity of government officials in three Asia-Pacific countries, namely, Bangladesh, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, and Samoa, to develop innovative strategies for improving rural digital and transport connectivity for socio-economic resilience. The project is being jointly implemented by the Information and Communications Technology and Disaster Risk Reduction Division (IDD), and the Transport Division (TD) of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), in collaboration with partner organizations and national institutions. Under the project, a regional inception meeting was held on 3 November 2022 in a hybrid format in Bangkok with the three participating countries.
As a follow up, ESCAP will organize a 2-day national workshop on 30-31 May 2023 in coordination with the Ministry of Technology and Communications, and the Ministry of Public Works and Transport of Lao PDR. The objective of the workshop will be to review and discuss the initial research and assessment findings, as well as develop actionable strategies to improve digital and transport connectivity in Lao PDR. The workshop will feature presentations by national consultants and experts from the ICT and transport sectors. On Day 2, a panel discussion will be held to discuss towards the development of actionable strategies for improving rural digital and transport connectivity for socio-economic resilience. The participants of the workshop will be the official representatives and stakeholders from Lao PDR from both ICT and transport sectors.
For further information, please contact the ICT and Development Section, ICT and Disaster Risk Reduction Division, ESCAP, e-mail: [email protected].