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UNCTAD’s Ecommerce and Digital Economy (ECDE) Programme

This recently published the “Year in Review 2022 – Looking beyond current crises: Boosting digital readiness in developing countries” ( The report highlights the support provided to better manage the digital transformation and to ensure that the benefits of ecommerce and the digital economy are more inclusive. In 2022, the ‘eTrade for all’ partnership reached a new milestone with the enrolment of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)  as its principal private sector counterpart. The initiative now has a membership of 35 partners. The Report shows that  during the UNCTAD eWeek 2022 more than 30 partners contributed actively to sessions reaching some 2,600 participants from 139 countries. EFA and EFSA both organised sessions. We interned to repeat that this year (the UNCTAD Ecommerce Week will be held later in the year. UNCTAD also points out that 30 countries and 2 regions have benefited from its support for an eTrade Readiness Assessment – a diagnostic of the national ecommerce enabling environment, including recommendations on how to improve it. Finally, UNCTAD can boast that nearly 200 women digital entrepreneurs are now members of the eTrade for Women Communities.

We should not forget that UNCTAD created an Intergovernmental Group of Experts on ecommerce in 2018. This aims to strengthen the work of UNCTAD on information and communications technologies, ecommerce and the digital economy for development. This committee will be meeting in mid-May to consider 2 issues: how to make data work for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and through its Working Group, continue its work on measuring ecommerce and the digital economy (see UNCTAD’s report: .

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Alastair Tempest

1 Comment

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