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The US, ADB join forces to boost Africa's digital transformation

By , ITWeb
Africa , 27 Dec 2023
African Development Bank president Akinwumi Adesina.
African Development Bank president Akinwumi Adesina.

The US Commercial Service and the African Development Bank have launched a new strategic partnership to promote digital transformation throughout Africa.

This engagement, announced on the margins of the recently held Africa Tech Festival in Cape Town, South Africa, lays the way for a series of talks on how US digital innovation may help African development goals.

According to the African Development Bank, which is led by Dr Akinwumi A. Adesina as the president, the discussions will centre on critical themes such as adopting new technologies, expanding internet access, enhancing skills, and building a legislative framework conducive to innovation.

Both sides will investigate how African governments may work with American technology companies to grow their economies, as well as how American businesses might capitalise on new prospects in Africa's emerging markets.

"We are at a turning point in Africa's technological advancement," said Ashley Ndir, senior U.S. Commercial Liaison to the African Development Bank. “We hope to stimulate innovation and economic progress by linking insights from the US private sector with Africa's thriving markets. This collaboration exemplifies that purpose."

The African Development Bank's head of ICT operations, Nicholas Williams, stated, "Africa has made significant investments in critical infrastructure and policy enhancements to create an innovative digital economy."

He added: “The African Development Bank, as Africa's premier development finance institution, will help push Africa's digital boundaries even further by forging strategic relationships, building on historical investments, and, most importantly, tapping into the energy of our young population, who are digital natives. We value the insights that the private sector in the United States may contribute."

The programme builds on the African Development Bank's $2 billion investment in digital infrastructure, which includes regional and national broadband development, the creation of favourable regulatory frameworks for private sector investments, the scaling of digital skills, and the fostering of innovative firms. 

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