The funds will help the organization enhance developing countries’ capacity to participate in the digital economy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sweden has donated $480,000 to support UNCTAD's work on e-commerce and the digital economy.
The COVID-19 pandemic has accentuated the need for more donor funding in this area, as it has shown the huge gaps that exist in countries’ readiness to engage in the digital economy.
“We greatly appreciate Sweden's long-standing support to our work on e-commerce,” said Shamika N. Sirimanne, UNCTAD’s technology and logistics director. “This work is now more important than ever in view of the rapid evolution of the digital economy and existing digital inequalities.”
Sweden has supported UNCTAD’s work on e-commerce and the digital economy for many years. The additional funds will, among other things, boost UNCTAD’s ability to support women digital entrepreneurs through the eTrade for Women initiative, develop new courses to raise awareness on e-commerce and improve the measurement of the digital economy.
Enhancing developing countries’ capacity
“We’re proud to support UNCTAD's work on e-commerce and the digital economy,” said Mikael Anzén, Sweden's ambassador to the World Trade Organization.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the need to enhance developing countries’ capacity to participate in the digital economy, not least through stronger involvement of women digital entrepreneurs as producers and traders,” Mr. Anzén added.
UNCTAD’s e-commerce and digital economy programme provides a unique platform for generating research and better statistics to enable governments and other stakeholders to understand the implications of economic digitalization for sustainable development.
It also assists developing countries to prepare for and adapt to digital disruptions and fosters global multi-stakeholder dialogue and a more coordinated approach on e-commerce and the digital economy from a development perspective.
Its activities include the biennial Digital Economy Report, the eCommerce Week, eTrade for all, eTrade for Women and eTrade readiness assessments.