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Sierra Leone: World Bank to support digital transformation with US$50 mln

Monday, 23 January 2023 18:38
Sierra Leone: World Bank to support digital transformation with US$50 mln

(Ecofin Agency) - In 2014, the Sierra Leonean government tried to get support from the World Bank for the implementation of its digital transformation project, but the process was unsuccessful because the international financial institution blamed Freetown for poor resource management. 

In Sierra Leone, the Minister of ICT Mohamed Rahman Swarray recently announced that the World Bank would support the country's 5-year digital transformation project with US$50 million. According to the official, the project will notably guarantee access to broadband connection and improve digital skills and digital government services.

"Digital transformation in government involves the utilization of innovative technologies in order to deliver more transparent, cost-effective, and customer-focused services to citizens at both national and local levels," the government official said.

The digital transformation project is in line with the government's ambition to digitally connect all Sierra Leoneans. It has become a crucial project for the government as digital transformation continues to accelerate on the continent since 2020, due notably to Covid-19. The Sierra Leonean government recently signed a memorandum of understanding with Vietnamese digital solutions provider FPT to benefit from its expertise. It is also working with Smart Africa to digitize its economy.

Digital transformation is expected to contribute to the development of every sector of the Sierra Leonean economy, facilitating economic growth, job creation, skills development, and the development of new business opportunities. According to the International Telecommunication Union, a 10% increase in mobile broadband Internet penetration in Africa would result in an average increase of 2.5% in GDP/capita.

Isaac K. Kassouwi





 
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