What is the way forward with implementing/or strengthening DITE in Africa?
A Center of Excellence on Digital Identity, Trade and Economy has been established by ECA to lead this work. The Center will serve as an on-demand source of technical advice for countries on their digital ID and digital economy. It will also undertake research on the multifarious dimensions of the digital economy as well as pool and coordinate digital-economy related work in the Commission. In particular, the Center will promote:
- the harmonization of related standards across member states
- support the development of regulation to safeguard security and
- the upping of investments in infrastructure, as well as
- develop capacity and skills of key actors in member countries, including the private sector to embrace the opportunities for innovation and job creation that digitalization presents.
In addition, the Center will seek to backstop ECA’s support towards the creation of a digital common market under the AfCFTA, with a view to helping African countries, ICT operators and citizens exploit the opportunities and benefits associated to the digital economy in a continent wide market.
A key area of work for the Center is in defining and supporting the implementation of minimum standards for digital ID systems to safeguard inclusion, trust and interoperability, as well as the harmonization of civil registration and digital ID systems. Further, following the mandate given by the STC-TIM, the Center in collaboration with the African Union Commission and other partners will also develop and support the implementation of a comprehensive strategy for Digital ID, Trade and Economy for Africa. Among others, the Center is exploring the cross-fertilization and sharing of best practices and experiences of countries that have made considerable progress on the digitalization.