President Paul Kagame said Tuesday that information technology will be embedded into all aspects of public service delivery in Rwanda – to accelerate a move towards prosperity.
Kagame was speaking in Davos, Switzerland where he is joining other leaders and top global business executives for 2017 World Economic Forum annual sessions.
In his first engagement at WEF, President Kagame addressed a workshop organized under the theme: “Innovations to Connect the Unconnected”, co-hosted by the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development and the World Economic Forum, moderated by Lauren Woodman, CEO of NetHope USA.
Irina Georgieva Bokova, Director General, UNESCO and Zhao Houlin, Secretary General of the ITU also attended and spoke.
“Without fast and affordable internet access, there are few pathways from poverty to prosperity in the 21st century,” said Kagame.
“By 2020, Rwanda aims to have universal access to broadband and to embed ICTs into all aspects of public service delivery. Progress in Rwanda and other countries on the continent is possible with the right policies, investments and focus.”
Kagame said that ICTs and digital connectivity has been proven to be an essential public utility as well as a development tool – and not a luxury.
The workshop included four simultaneous breakout sessions on: financing ICT connectivity infrastructure; last mile technologies and innovative business models; country partnership models; and the gender digital divide, with the aim of achieving consensus on an action agenda to accelerate digital development in 2017.
The 2017 WEF is organized under the theme: “Responsive and Responsible Leadership,” with a focus on improving global cooperation and collaboration.