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Challenges of e-Business in GCC : Digital Divide & Economic Reform. Presented by:. Ihsan Ali Bu-Hulaiga, Ph.D. Member, Saudi Shoura Council Professor of IT, KFUPM, Dhahran Saudi Arabia. Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform. 1. Overview. Question Answers Definition Access

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Challenges of e-Business in GCC: Digital Divide & Economic Reform

Presented by:

Ihsan Ali Bu-Hulaiga, Ph.D.

Member, Saudi Shoura Council

Professor of IT, KFUPM, Dhahran Saudi Arabia

Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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Overview

  • Question
  • Answers
  • Definition
  • Access
  • The disconnected
  • The GCC scene
  • Bridging the gap
  • GCC e-reform

Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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Question

Is there a digital divide, or is the economic divide merely going digital?

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Overview

  • Question
  • Answers
  • Definition
  • Access
  • The disconnected
  • The GCC scene
  • Bridging the gap
  • GCC e-reform

Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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Answers

“The revolution in information and communications technologies offers genuine potential, but also raises the risk that a significant portion of the world will lose out. We need to promote policies and develop institutions which will let everybody benefit..And it won\'t happen on its own."

Juan Somavia,

director-general of the labor organization, a UN agency.

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Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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Answers

“There is work to be done to reduce the so-called digital divide between the technology haves and have-nots. The newly formed Dot.force is therefore an important step.”

Donald J. Johnston

secretary-general of the OECD

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Answers

  • There is so much great stuff out there that my greatest fear is the digital divide,"
  • Bill Gates,
  • chairman of Microsoft Corp

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Answers

“The development .. created an opportunity to narrow the divide in coming years. The chance had to be seized quickly.. If we don\'t catch it now, I don\'t think we\'ll ever catch it in the next several hundred years.“

John Chambers, chairman and chief executive

Cisco Systems Inc

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Answers

We cannot close the digital divide without efforts to provide distance learning, to donate software and low-cost computers for villages, and to train people to use them.

President Bill Clinton APEC Summit, November, 2000

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Answers

“Companies should seek to tackle the divide in their own self-interest rather than as philanthropy because today\'s poor countries are potential growth markets of tomorrow.”

Carly Fiorina, chairman and chief executive

Hewlett-Packard Co.

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Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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Answers

“E-commerce in Asia is expected to account for 25 percent of the world\'s total by the year 2003, promising huge business opportunities. If we don\'t want to let these opportunities slip away, we must seek a balanced development of the new economy and bridge the digital divide.”

Tang Jiaxuan

Foreign Minister of China

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Answers

"The wealth gap between rich and poor nations is widening, and the digital divide is getting worse."

Benjamin Mkapa,

President of Tanzania

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Answers

‘‘We found that the digital divide is much more than building the basic physical infrastructure that you need to go online. Financial access to the Internet is just as important. Cognitive access is another barrier.”

Earnest J. Wilson III,

Global Information Infrastructure Commission

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Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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Overview

  • Question
  • Answers
  • Definition
  • Access
  • The disconnected
  • The GCC scene
  • Bridging the gap
  • GCC e-reform

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Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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Digital Divide: a definition

“Digital divide refers to gab between individuals, households, businesses and geographic areas at different socio-economic levels with regard both to their opportunities to access information and communication technologies (ICT) and to their use of the Internet for a variety of activities.”

OECD

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Overview

  • Question
  • Answers
  • Definition
  • Access
  • The disconnected
  • The GCC scene
  • Bridging the gap
  • GCC e-reform

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Access

  • “The Internet may allow equal economic opportunity and democratic communication, but it will do so only for those with access.”
  • Hoffman an Novak,
  • The Growing Digital Divide

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Access

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Access

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Access

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Overview

  • Question
  • Answers
  • Definition
  • Access
  • The disconnected
  • The GCC scene
  • Bridging the gap
  • GCC e-reform

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Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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The disconnected

  • Only 5 percent to 6 percent of the worldwide population has accessed the Internet.
  • 90 percent of them are in the industrialized countries - 57 percent in the United States and Canada alone.
  • By contrast, Africa and the Middle East account for just 1 percent of Internet users.

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The disconnected

  • ICT, have so far reached less than 5 percent of the world\'s population.
  • The ratio of Internet use in the U.S. is one hundred to two hundred times the level in some developing countries.
  • It has been estimated that in numerous developing countries the percentage of the population online by 2005 will average just 4 percent, compared to an average of 72 percent in the top eight economies.
  • Electronic business is projected to amount to more than $7 trillion within the next five years. This opportunity will be a boon only for those with the skills, resources and infrastructure to invest in the information economy.

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The disconnected

To India the"digital divide" is a grave handicap

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The disconnected

  • India
  • The stated goal is to be “an economic super power” by 2020.
  • Set 8 to 9 percent growth as the annual requirement to double per capita income in the next 10 years.
  • There are more than a million Indian high-tech experts in the advanced countries.
  • Half the population remains illiterate, many villages have no schools, 500 million Indians subsist on $1 a day or less.
  • Internet use currently stands at 0.4 percent of the adult population.
  • At 2.2 lines per 100 citizens, telephone penetration is extremely low.

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The disconnected

The motive of e-ASEAN is to create a regional environment that complements global electronic norms.

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The disconnected

  • ASEAN
  • Fewer than two in ten thousand Cambodians and Vietnamese use the Internet, while nearly 3,000 out of every 10,000 Singaporeans do so.
  • More than 400 million people connected to the Web in the world today, less than 1 percent are in Southeast Asia.
  • An e-ASEAN Task Force was created in November 1999 to formulate a broad and comprehensive action plan, concerning issues, such as: improving connectivity, building a legal and regulatory environment, creating a seamless marketplace for ICT, developing human capacities, and sustained government e-leadership.
  • The ASEAN Leaders signed, in November 2000, an e-ASEAN Framework Agreement that commits them to take time-bound actions to put in place the hardware and software systems needed to access, process and share information, and promote the growth of e-commerce in the region.

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The disconnected

The Arab world.. the last holdout!

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The disconnected

  • In Middle East homes, the PC penetration rate stood at about 15 percent of households against 50 percent in western Europe and 70 percent in the United States. 
  • Intel opened an office in the GCC Region, in 1996. Some 25 years ago, it had opened a chip manufacturing plant in Israel.
  • In October, Intel won government approval for a $500 million project to build a microchip plant in Egypt.

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The disconnected

The language

English   215.6 M (47.5)Non-English 237.8 M (52.5%)European Languages  131.2 M  (28.9%)  German     27.5 M  (6.1%)  Spanish    21.1 M  (5.2%)  French     16.6 M  (3.7%)  Italian    14.2 M  (3.1%)  Portuguese 11.5 M  (2.5%)  ...

Asian Languages  106.6 M  (23.5%)Japanese  38.8 M  (8.6%)  Chinese   40.7 M  (9.0%)  Korean    19.8 M  (4.4%)

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The disconnected

  • The Arab World
  • There are now 3.54 million Internet users in the Arab world, up 1.5 million in the past year. (Ajeeb.com)
  • There will be over 5 million users in Arab countries by the end of this year, and 10 to 12 million by the end of 2002.
  • 49 percent of the Arab world’s Internet users live in the GCC.
  • GCC internet penetration rate is 5.6 percent, three-fold of the pan-Arabs’.

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The disconnected

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Overview

  • Question
  • Answers
  • Definition
  • Policies
  • Access
  • The disconnected
  • The GCC scene
  • Bridging the gap
  • GCC e-reform

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The GCC scene

GCC e-STRATEGY:

the individualistic approach

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the gcc scene
The GCC scene

Internet penetration

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The GCC scene

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The GCC scene

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The GCC scene

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The GCC scene

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The GCC scene

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The GCC scene

  • Joint Committee on E-Commerce (JCEC)
    • Established on September 2000 by the GCC Trade Cooperation Ministerial Committee (GTCMC)
    • JCEC held its first meeting on February 2001.
    • JCEC is an advisory committee to the GTCMC.
    • JCEC is a standing committee, and meets bi-monthly.

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Overview

  • Question
  • Answers
  • Definition
  • Policies
  • Access
  • The disconnected
  • The GCC scene
  • Bridging the gap
  • GCC e-reform

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Bridging the gap

  • The robustness and reliability of the network is consistently improving.
  • The intelligent network is fast becoming reality.
  • Demand is growing fast for e-services

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Bridging the gap

  • Network Infrastructure
  • Diffusion to individuals and households
  • Diffusion to business
  • Education and training
  • Government initiatives
  • Multilateral cooperation

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Bridging the gap

  • Synergy with ICT is vital to the GCC’s economic development. It requires devising an integrative approach to the region’s e-strategy, policy, and mechanisms.

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Bridging the gap

  • The focus is on dynamic collaboration -- a strategy of achieving mutual gain by sharing business activities across a network of allies.

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Bridging the gap

  • Dynamic collaboration is an opportunity for the GCC region (both government and business) to seize competitive advantage by optimizing the whole supply network -- not just a link in the chain.

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Bridging the gap

  • A supply chain is a network of activities that procures inputs, transforms them, and distributes outputs to buyers.
  • Organizations along the supply chain used to operate independently.

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Overview

  • Question
  • Answers
  • Definition
  • Policies
  • Access
  • The disconnected
  • The GCC scene
  • Bridging the gap
  • GCC e-reform

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Economic reforms

  • Competition policy
  • Price liberalization
  • Privatization
  • Governance
  • Non-bank financial institutions

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GCC e-reforms

  • e-strategy
  • e-policy
  • e-mechanism

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GCC e-strategy

  • The GCC Supreme Council sets a time-bound strategic goal to make the GCC a digitally enabled, and dynamically collaborated economy. (e-GCC initiative)

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GCC e-policy

  • Speed up market opening in sectors where GCC states’ action need be coordinated, such as telecom, investment and financial services.
  • Provide public funds to fostering the knowledge-based economy.
  • Pass GCC legislation on telecommunication and e-commerce.
  • Benchmark national measures to realize the potential of e-government and bridge the digital divide.

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GCC e-mechanism

  • A task force is to articulate a comprehensive action plan, concerning ICT-related issues and technicalities, such as:
      • connectivity,
      • universal access to Internet,
      • regulatory environment,
      • seamless marketplace,
      • human capacities, and
      • government and business competitive advantage.

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Concluding remarks

  • Country level
  • Gain better understanding of the digital divide.
  • Design and execute a national action plan.
  • Launch government, social, and business initiatives for achieving Internet universal access. Launch an e-GCC initiative: e-strategy, policies, and mechanisms.

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Concluding remarks

  • Region level
  • Launch an e-GCC initiative: e-strategy, policies, and mechanisms.
  • Upgrade the mandate of the JOINT COMMITTEE, to be a Task Force, with clear-cut mission, strict time-frame, and readily available resources to act.

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Thank you

Buhulaiga, GCC Digital Divide & Economic Reform

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