Laos speeds up digital transformation for sustainable development

Thursday, 2021-10-14 10:05:40
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Lao Minister of Technology and Communications Boviengkham Vongdara (L) at the International Telecommunication Union (ITU)'s Digital World 2021. (Photo: https://www.thestar.com.my/)
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NDO/VNA – Lao Minister of Technology and Communications Boviengkham Vongdara has highlighted the need for Laos to accelerate digital transformation in association with sustainable development.

Speaking at a ministerial-level roundtable discussion themed “Cutting the cost: Can affordable access accelerate digital transformation?” within the framework of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU)'s Digital World 2021 organised by the Vietnamese Ministry of Information and Communications and the ITU from October 12-14, the Lao minister spotlighted main issues related to prices and infrastructure, native content; digital skills and people's digital awareness.

He said the Lao Ministry of Technology and Communications is promoting the use of local language and creation of digital contents by developing fonts and keyboards that support the Lao language for computers and mobile devices.

Boviengkham said that cutting the cost is only part of solutions to promote digital transformation because main factors to speed up digital transformation are related to cooperation, the ecosystem, infrastructure, and digital literacy.

According to ITU data, over 90% of the urban population and over 70% of the rural population globally were covered by 4G, satellite or other technologies in 2020, but only 51% of the global population is using the Internet. Barriers to Internet access include affordability, digital inclusion, public awareness, and the lack of digital content in native languages.