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					                           Final Report

            Feasibility Study for an
     Information Society Program for the
African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Countries
                        (Grant Agreement # 1237)

                       ANNEXES I - III:
                           20 January 2005



                            Project Leaders:
                                Tina James
                                 Kate Wild

                            Team Members:

                               Lishan Adam
                              Boubakar Barry
                             Stephen Esselaar
                              Valerie Gordon
                               Taholo Kami
                              Yacine Khelladi
                              Vidya Kissoon
                              Jonathan Miller
                               David Souter




                                                          www.trigrammic.com
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     jon@trigrammic.com                           tina@trigrammic.com
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                   TABLE OF CONTENTS




Annex I     Current Donor-funded ICT Programs in
            OECD and EU Countries                                            I-III: 2


Annex II    Organizations and Specialized Agencies of the
            United Nations and Other Leading Sectoral Partners               I-III: 6


Annex III   The Multilateral Development Banks                               I-III:12




                             Annex I-III:1
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                                        Annex I

                Current Donor-funded ICT Programs in
                       OECD and EU Countries
This annex draws substantially on the OECD Donor ICT Strategies Matrix 2003 edition
published in December 2003.

Section 1 contains a brief overview of donor ICT programs in OECD countries; Section 2
summarizes ICT for development programs in EU member states; Section 3 draws lessons
for the EU ACP program from two DFID-led ICT initiatives.

1. Overview of OECD donor programs

Donors have opted for a strategic focus on:
    Mainstreaming ICT into broader development programs;
    A broad information society agenda rather than a narrow telecommunications
      focus;
    ICT as a means not an end; ICTs should serve development goals, and in particular
      MDGs, and poverty reduction;
    ICTs as complementary to and supportive of other development investments rather
      than operating in parallel to them.

The meaning of mainstreaming varies: it can apply to the integration of ICTs systematically
at the project level (for example the incorporation of electronic linkages into all education
projects as is the case in the Austrian aid program); it can mean integrating ICTs into broad
poverty reduction strategies, as is the case in DFID. In this case the logical consequence is
the transfer of decisions about ICT programs from development agencies to local
constituents where the ICT interventions will have their impact.               While donors
mainstream ICTs into their sectoral programs we have not identified donors with a
focus on integrating ICT planning into sectoral planning processes.

Substantive Focus

      Education and learning (including distance learning) are most widely recognized as
       fertile ground for exploring development benefits of ICTs by 11 of the 21 donor
       programs included in the Matrix;
      A significant number of donors (9) is still tackling problems of connectivity and
       infrastructure;
      Health, SMMEs, regulation and policy, governance and the environment are
       explicitly stated as being on the agendas of 25% to 30% of the donors;
      Poverty reduction and the MDGs are increasingly mentioned as an explicit objective
       at the program level.
      Most donors cover a fairly broad spectrum of issues within their ICT programs but a
       few – e.g. Italy on e-governance (in English-speaking Caribbean & some countries in
       Africa) and Sweden on academic communities mainly in Africa – have a specific
       sectoral or institutional focus.




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Geographic Focus

      Australia and New Zealand target their aid programs (not necessarily exclusively) at
       the Pacific;
      Italy targets (among other regions) the English-speaking Caribbean;
      Austria targets least developed countries and the poorest communities within them;
      A few donors target specific countries – mainly in Africa (Ireland, Sweden);
      Most target the developing regions without more specificity;
      Nobody targets exclusively the ACPs except the EU;
      And – more interesting – no donors specifically target the members of regional
       cooperation/integration organizations except the EU – SADC, CARICOM, ECOWAS,
       and Pacific Forum – even though the success of ICT programs and the growth of the
       sector is to some extent dependent upon regional integration.

Budgetary Envelopes

Scale of funding varies enormously depending on the size of the economy in the donor
country - from an annual expenditure of USD1.2 million in Luxembourg to over USD 200
million by the US. It is difficult to establish a meaningful figure given the difficulty of
isolating expenditure on ICT components that support of projects in other sectors. It is
even more difficult to estimate how much donor aid is required to build a sufficient critical
mass of ICT infrastructure, capacity and expertise to begin to impact on the economic or
social dimensions of poverty.

What is clear though is that with the size of the budgetary envelope proposed for the new
EU program – and the number of ACP countries – there will be a need both to target funds
carefully and to capture additional resources from other EU budgets or from other donors
if it is to make a significant impact. Hence the importance of defining a program that can
pave the way for leveraging funds from the European Development Fund.

Funding Time Frames

It is also difficult to get a clear idea of time periods for which funding is provided but given
that most funding data is given on an annual basis with a few exceptions for 2, 3 or 5 year
periods it is fair to assume that projects are funded for similar periods. The MDGs call for a
longer, 15 year, time frame. It is also true that benefits of ICTs to the improvement of the
quality of education or health systems – the core MDG sectors – can only be measured over
the long term.

A case can therefore be made for defining different modalities that provide sufficient
guarantees of accountability but also assure funding over periods of five years or longer
given satisfactory progress on the implementation side.

2. ICT for Development Programs in the Donor Programs of EU Member States

Most EU member states that have significant development programs have now incorporated
an approach to ICTs and development within these. The following paragraphs summarise
relevant information from the latest edition of the OECD’s Donor ICT Strategies Matrix:

The experience of Britain’s development agency DFID is described in more detail in
Section 3 below to illustrate learning of value to the EU ACP model.

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The Danish development agency DANIDA does not have an explicit ICT4D program as such
but recognizes the increasing use of ICTs in development, shares in discussions about ICT4D
priorities with other agencies and works on ICT4D issues with, among others, IICD and
Bellanet.

The French aid program has several ICT4D programs, including ADEN (promotion of ICT
access), ARTIC (national e-strategies), PROCOOPTIC (online tools) and work on e-
government and scientific and technical information systems.

The German development ministry has been reviewing its and others’ experience in ICTs
before finalising its approach to the sector, and has begun to establish a ‘Center of
Excellence for ICT and Development’ in Germany. It cites a number of examples of ICT-
focused bilateral projects undertaken within current aid programs.

The Italian government has focused on e-government, including the establishment of a
trust fund on e-government for the Latin American and Caribbean region, managed by the
Inter-American Development Bank.

The Netherlands government established the International Institute for Communications
and Development (IICD) as an NGO-style autonomous agency to act on its behalf in the
ICT4D field, with a particular aim of promoting public/private-sector partnerships and
disseminating best practice and experience. IICD has focused on substantial sectoral
interventions in the Dutch development ministry’s priority countries.

The Spanish government has a number of economic cooperation initiatives in the ICT area,
particularly with countries in Latin America.

Sweden’s development agency SIDA ‘supports the rapid integration of ICT’ in its partner
countries, ‘in order to improve communications and the exchange of information, both
within countries and globally.’ SIDA strongly supports a mainstreaming approach and
prefers smaller and NGO-style initiatives; it is critical of the inefficiencies in larger aid
bureaucracies.

The aid programs of Belgium, Finland, Greece, Ireland and Luxembourg have little in the
way of current ICT4D activity but broadly support a mainstreaming approach and (in some
cases, at least) the incorporation of ICTs in PRSPs.

The leading European (and other) bilateral agencies in this area have sought, where
possible, to develop multi-donor approaches to ICTs and development, both with one
another and with non-European partners such as the United States Agency for International
Development (USAID), Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the
Canadian International Development Research Centre (IDRC).

3. Relevant experience: Building Digital Opportunities (BDO) and Catalysing Access to
ICTs in Africa (CATIA)

UK DFID has undertaken two ICT programs which have some similarities in scale and
purpose to the proposed ACP ICT program, one of which has a significant multi-donor
dimension. It is worth briefly considering these models and any lessons that may be drawn
from them.



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The ‘Building Digital Opportunities’ (BDO) program had funding of approximately
€15million over a three-year period (2001-2004). It financed four different areas of
activity, using five different delivery agencies (mostly NGOs) operating under what
amounted to accountable grants (i.e. they were substantially able to decide how to use
the funds themselves, within broad guidelines set out in agreed logframes). These
agencies were selected by DFID on the basis of experience, not by competitive tender, and
their areas of work ranged from community radio to the policy and regulatory
environment. The program had global coverage (though it focused in practice on DFID’s
priority areas, Africa and South Asia), and was managed by a combination of in-house DFID
personnel and outsourcing to IICD (which was also one of the five project agencies). The
tone of management was quite experimental – this was DFID’s first attempt at an ICT
program, and it depended substantially on the expertise of its chosen partners – and varied
over time as some unexpected synergies were established between ostensibly different
program areas. Some other bilateral agencies played minor roles in BDO – notably DGIS
(Netherlands) and SDC (Switzerland).

BDO was regarded as a success by its partner agencies, especially because of the way it
fostered cooperation between them, though formal evaluation for DFID was less positive
about its impact on development/poverty (not surprising, given the relatively small scale
and varied nature of the program as a whole). BDO experience demonstrated in particular
the importance of investing time and resources in coordination between partners in order
to achieve a clear program character; and the effectiveness of an accountable grant
arrangement. However, such an arrangement is unlikely to meet OJEC (Official Journal of
the European Commission) requirements in the current case.

The Catalysing Access to ICT in Africa (CATIA) program, launched in 2003, is similar to BDO
in that it brings together a number of apparently disparate activities within an overarching
brand. It is also similar in scale, although this time funding is confined to Africa. CATIA
differs from BDO, however, in that it was established as a multi-donor initiative (USAID,
SDC, SIDA, CIDA and IDRC are among the other donors involved), and in that overall
program management was awarded to an external consultancy AKC (Atos KPMG Consulting)
following competitive tender. AKC now has overall responsibility for delivering outputs set
out in logframes for each of CATIA’s nine components, which are managed by sub-
contractors (most of which were not selected by competitive tender, and which have very
considerable autonomy in deciding what and how they deliver). CATIA is relatively new,
but the complexities of its management structure have raised a number of issues:

      The process of securing multi-donor support was long and complex, and led to
       delays which may mean that the design of some program components became sub-
       optimal;
      The supply chain from original donors (DFID and its partners) through AKC, sub-
       contractors, delivery agents and intermediaries to intended beneficiaries (‘poor
       people’) is long and involves a number of parties with different objectives;
      The patterns of responsibility – between DFID, AKC, component subcontractors and
       the appointed independent evaluator – are unclear and have been confusing to
       some partners;
      The complexity of the program and reduced resources for coordination have made
       it more difficult to secure coordination, synergies and branding than with BDO.

One lesson for the ACP ICT program from CATIA is probably the importance of simplicity
and clarity in determining both objectives and management roles and responsibilities. The
appointment of a single management agent for CATIA overall has probably been beneficial
                                       Annex I-III:4
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in terms of coordination and coherence. However, CATIA shows that, the more complex
the supply chain, the more attention needs to be paid to consistency and clarity
throughout it – for example, in the terms of reference issued for project activities, and the
procedures used for project selection. On balance, CATIA experience would suggest that
the ACP ICT program’s management structure should be as simple as possible, and that our
proposals should include recommendations designed to ensure that project selection and
management focus on clearly-defined development outcomes as well as fulfilling OJEC
procurement requirements.

A second point worth noting, and arising from both BDO and CATIA, is the relatively small
impact that can be achieved with funding on the scale available, which is similar to that
within the proposed ACP program. This has implications both for program content and for
the extent to which it is sensible to divide program funds into sub-components, especially
given the high priority that DGDev attaches to visible outcomes.




                                        Annex I-III:5
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                                         Annex II
     Organizations and Specialized Agencies of the United
         Nations and Other Leading Sectoral Partners
The organizations of the United Nations (UN) spearhead broad development policies and
programs (United Nations Development Program (UNDP), World Bank) and provide specific
technical expertise arising from their own mandates (FAO – agriculture and rural
development; WHO – health; etc). With the exception of the International
Telecommunications Union (ITU) and the United Nations Education Science and Culture
Organization (UNESCO) they mainly address ICTs as a means of increasing the effectiveness
of their own networks of offices, partner institutions in member States and projects. They
often sit at the center of global networks of governmental organizations and NGOs with
similar interests (workers and employers organizations for example in the case of the
International Labor Organization (ILO)) and can be effective in spreading ICT capacity
through those networks.

The ITU is the only UN organization mandated as a specialist ICT organization – ITU’s
expertise is rooted in telecommunications; it has only recently positioned itself as a
broader information society organization in part as a consequence of its leadership of the
WSIS process.

This section will sample experiences from the UN community and clusters of related
organizations in issue areas that underpin the MDGs. Depending on the priorities of
different ACP regions the organizations identified below – and in particular their offices on
the ground - could be useful partner organizations. The clusters are indicative of the kind
of organizations working in key areas rather than comprehensive.


Cluster 1: Agriculture and rural development – the International Fund for Agricultural
Development, the Food and Agriculture Organization, the Consultative Group on
Agricultural Research, CTA: Center for Tropical Agriculture

This cluster of organizations is important to the definition of sustainable rural livelihoods.

Electronic Networking for Rural Asia/Pacific Projects (ENRAP – www.enrap.org) is an
IFAD-funded initiative to support internet use and knowledge sharing amongst rural
development projects in Asia/Pacific region. Effective use of internet information
resources and communication facilities are expected to contribute to the empowerment of
rural communities and help address their development objectives. ENRAP supports an
extensive program of training workshops mainly at the national level. These workshops are
designed to build capacity within project organizations and network among them.

FAO has a long history of assembling agricultural information resources for the use of its
member      States.    WAICENT    –    the    World    Agricultural    Information    Center
(www.fao.org/waicent) – is a portal providing access to a wide range of information on
issues related to rural development, agriculture and food security. In order to address rural
communities more directly FAO has defined a program to assist Low-Income Food Deficit
Countries (LIFDCs) to bridge the rural digital divide in support of improved food security
and reduced poverty through the effective use of knowledge and information. It also
supports the development of geographic information system tools in support of rural
development and planning.

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The mandate of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR)
(http://ictkm.cgiar.org/projects.html) is to mobilize agricultural science to reduce
poverty, foster human well-being, promote agricultural growth and protect the
environment. It is made up of a number of international agricultural research centers
located almost exclusively in the South. The CG’s ICT-Knowledge Management Program will
combine initiatives designed to promote the expansion of infrastructure (including at mid-
size remote locations particularly in Africa), scientific innovation (including the
development of geo-spatial systems and expert systems, for example for plant protection),
training and a more integrated communication system for CG members.

The Center for Tropical Agricultural (CTA) (http://www.cta.int/about/index.htm) is one
of the key partners in supporting the development of agricultural information tools and
services relevant to the needs of the developing world. CTA was established in 1983 under
the Lomé Convention between the ACP Group and the European Union and operates since
2000 within the framework of the ACP-EC Cotonou agreement. It's main tasks are "to
develop and provide services that improve access to information for agricultural and rural
development, and to strengthen the capacity of ACP countries to produce, acquire,
exchange and utilize information in this area".

UNEP – the United Nations Environment Program – focuses on building a credible global
scientific information base to support decision-making and strategic planning related to
the environment and natural resources. Through its GEO (Global Environmental Outlook)
program it tracks a number of indicators which help explain the nature of ecosystem
change and point to its consequences. UNEP supplies the necessary global context for
environmental decision-making at regional and national levels.

Cluster 2. Education – United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization
(UNESCO), the Commonwealth of Learning (CoL), Imfundo, the Partnership for Higher
Education in Africa. The Global e-Schools Initiative.

This cluster of organizations looks at the value of ICTs for different aspects of education –
from basic to tertiary and from community access to teacher training.

UNESCO (http://portal.unesco.org) manages close to USD 55 million of regular and extra-
budgetary resources on a biennial basis through its Communication and Information
Program; these funds are directed to promoting the free flow of ideas, pluralism and
cultural diversity in media and publicly available access to all information and channels of
communication. UNESCO has been active in the promotion of telecenters as a tool for
public access – along with IDRC and ITU. It is not easy to establish the extent to which
UNESCO globally is exploring ICT applications for application to formal education – through
linkages between the Education Sector and the Communications and Information Sector -
although a number of projects support distance or open learning in specific subjects.
UNESCO’s Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific has an ICT for Education Program.

Commonwealth of Learning (CoL) (www.col.org) is an inter-governmental organization
created by the Commonwealth to encourage the development and sharing of distance
learning/open learning knowledge, resources and technologies to help developing
countries access quality education and training. CoL supports collaboration, delivers
training, provides tools for capacity building and provides information.

Imfundo is a DFID program established to explore the implications of IT in education.
Imfundo combines the skills and contributions of a wide range of different partners to help
African governments achieve the international development targets of gender equality and

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universal primary education through the commissioning of research and reports on a range
of related issues.

The Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Ford Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T.
MacArthur Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation initiated a Partnership
(www.foundation-partnership.org in 2000 aimed at supporting efforts to reform African
universities, control costs and ensure linkages to the global intellectual community. The
Partners support selected African universities and other centers of intellectual inquiry in
their efforts to stimulate enlightened, equitable, knowledge-based national development.
One aspect of their work helps build capacity to extend internet access within the
universities.

The Global e-schools and communities initiative (GeSCI) developed under the auspices of
the UN ICT Task Force (www.unicttaskforce.org) is designed to support national and
regional e-schools initiatives by convening all relevant players, bringing in knowledge of
best practices, raising resources, facilitating economies of scale and arranging for
independent monitoring and evaluation. GeSCI is intended to support and extend – but not
to supplant – existing initiatives such as SchoolNet Africa and the NEPAD initiative which
supports it.

Cluster 3. Health and Reproductive Health – World Health Organization (WHO), the UN
Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA), Satellife

The aim of WHO’s (www.who.org) health information work is to improve public health by
facilitating the flow of health information via the internet. WHO was late in recognizing
the ways that access to the internet could support health practitioners but in 2002 it
launched the Health internet Access to Research Initiative (HINARI) which provides broad
access to global literature on public health to libraries and research institutes in the
developing world. HINARI has a training component which focuses on ways to put health
information into action.

The United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA – www.unfpa.org) and the
Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs
(http://www.un.org/esa/population/unpop.htm) have jointly supported population
information activities since the 1970s through the Population Information Network (POPIN)
which began as a program to help institutions in developing countries bring information
resources to bear on issues related to population and reproductive health and is now
effectively a portal to the population information resources of the UN family. UNFPA,
however, has transformed the old POPIN concept into a system for the collaborative
development of knowledge assets and, in cooperation with the Irish has developed a
software package (pKADS – Portable Knowledge Asset Development System) to capture
collective know how on subjects related to its mandate.

     “Over the past fourteen years, SATELLIFE has been a leader in developing
     solutions to the everyday information needs of health professionals working
     in communities where AIDS and malaria are common place, but medical
     journals and the internet are an unaffordable luxury. Through innovative
     applications of information and communication technology, we break down
     barriers to information access. From major cities to remote villages, we
     extend the power of knowledge and the promise of better health.”
                                                                     www.healthnet.org.



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Among other projects Satellife has pioneered the use of personal digital assistants (hand
held computers) to get information into and out of deep rural areas.

Cluster 4. Small and medium size enterprises and e-commerce – UNIDO, UNCTAD

Much of UNIDO’s work (www.unido.org/en/doc/9881#story2) aims at helping SMMEs in the
least developed countries overcome constraints that hamper growth, competitiveness and
linkage to the global economy. UNIDO’s programs concentrate on such issues as networking
of SMMEs, business support services, building e-business relationships to national and
global supply chains, promoting the use of ICTs in SMMEs and providing appropriate
training.

     “UNIDO's focus is thus on building up local capacities of industry to
     identify, adopt and use applications of ICT to make their work
     more effective and efficient. As important, is the recognition that
     the benefit of ICT is really the benefit of the information or
     knowledge (i.e. content) that is made available via ICT. In other
     words, development outcomes will be more determined by
     knowledge and learning capacity than by investment in physical
     capital alone.”

UNCTAD – the UN Conference on Trade and Development (www.unctad.org) – is also
concerned with helping SMMEs use ICTs – in particular the internet – to increase their
capacity particularly with respect to international trade. UNCTAD has a history of
convening policy makers on ICT and e-commerce issues and of providing technical advice in
support of trade processes initially through TradePoint and subsequently through the
ASYCUDA++ program aimed at standardizing and streamlining trade documentation. It runs
training programs aimed at helping entrepreneurs master doing business over the internet
and has recently published a practical guide for business people particularly in least
developed countries.

Among its other activities, UNCTAD produces an annual E-Commerce and Development
Report focused on trends in information and communications technologies (ICT), such as e-
commerce and e-business, and on national and international policy and strategy options for
improving the development impact of these technologies in developing countries.

Cluster 5. Governance - Development Gateway, Government of Italy, UN Department of
Economic and Social Affairs, Public Administration and Finance Department, Open
Society Institute

The Development Gateway Foundation and the Government of Italy are together
launching an e-Government Grants Program to assist countries in identifying and
implementing e-government projects. E-governance is a focus of Italian technical
assistance.

The program will support (over an initial two-year period) information technology projects
focused on modernizing and integrating processes and systems to improve public
administration, with a particular emphasis on e-procurement, e-statistics, and e-
accounting. It is open to developing countries and countries with economies in transition.
(www.developmentgateway.org/node/190911/news/index?)

UNPAN, the United Nations Public Administration Network (www.unpan.org) provides
expertise and information on a wide range of governance, administrative and finance

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issues including e-government and knowledge systems and offers on-line training,
information, advisory, conference and directory services.

The Open Society Institute (Soros) (www.soros.org) is a private foundation aimed at the
establishment of open societies by influencing government policies through processes of
reform. OSI works through national foundations – including in Haiti, South Africa and
Senegal.

Cluster 6. Broad development – World Bank, UNDP

The Bank and UNDP are the leading multilateral organizations defining broad international
development policy. Both have recently restructured their ICT programs with a view to
making a more direct link between ICTs, poverty alleviation and the achievement of the
MDGs.

UNDP is the UN’s main operational arm with respect to ICTs and development – a role
supported by its decade–long history of involvement with internet technologies, its
network of national and regional offices, and its coordinating role at the country level. It is
only relatively recently that UNDP elevated ICT as one of its core practice areas – it has
now reversed that decision however and is focusing its headquarters ICT program on two
areas: governance and poverty alleviation. The network of regional advisors is still in place
and will presumably provide more direct support to the UNDP resident representatives as
they shape national programs. UNDP also works through partnership with a multiplicity of
stakeholders, including UN organizations, to mainstream ICT into sectoral programs – with
UNIFEM on gender, for example. UNDP focuses its efforts at the policy level; UNDP has just
given up its role as co-chair of the UNICT Task Force working group on e-strategies but it
has a particular contribution to make to ensure an MDG or poverty focus.

The Global Information and Communication Technologies Department of the World Bank
aims to provide governments, private companies, and community organizations with the
capital and expertise needed to develop and apply information and communication
technologies to reduce poverty and foster development. It works through three divisions:
the Policy Division provides advice to governments on policies and regulations that create a
positive investment climate for telecommunications, postal services, and e-applications;
the Communications Investment Division provides loans and equity financing to
telecommunication, broadband connectivity, broadcast and media, satellite and
telecommunications equipment manufacturing related businesses in the private sector; and
the Portfolio and Technology Investment Division provides equity and loan financing to a
variety of technology firms, including technology services, business process outsourcing,
software development, chip design, and e-government applications. It also manages IFC’s
information and communication technologies investment portfolio and performs credit
reviews. 1

The World Bank houses InfoDev, a multi-donor grant facility supported by over 20 donors.
InfoDev was created in 1995 to help developing countries address the obstacles they faced
in an increasingly information-driven world economy. While its initial focus was on funding
pilot projects that explored the potential of ICTs to reduce poverty and promote
development infoDev has recently implemented a new strategy which puts more emphasis
on the learning required to facilitate the transition from pilot to action in an attempt to
increase understanding of the contribution ICTs can make to the achievement of the MDGs.
It is launching an intensive program of support for research, analysis, evaluation, impact

1
    http://info.worldbank.org/ict/
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monitoring, and toolkit development focused on distilling the lessons of experience from
the past ten years, with a particular focus on mainstreaming and scaling up successful ICT
approaches and applications.2

Because of the influence of the Bank and other Bretton Woods institutions on national
policy processes, it is well positioned to ensure that poverty reduction strategies take
advantage of the instrumental quality of ICTs and that steps are taken to incorporate
adequate benchmarking and indicators into ICT components of PRSPs. Both benchmarking
and monitoring need to go beyond establishing the availability of ICTs and the provision of
access and establish how people use them and what the impact is on their educational
achievement, access to jobs, health, etc.

Cluster 7. Telecommunications
The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) is the specialized agency within the
United Nations System where 189 government and over 600 Private sector members
coordinate global telecom networks and services (www.itu.org).

Founded on the principle of international cooperation between government and the
private sector, the ITU is the global forum through which government and industry can
work towards consensus on a wide range of issues affecting the future directions of this
industry. 3 Companies both large and small can become members of ITU sectors by paying
membership fees. Lower fees are available for membership in the Telecommunications
Development sector – in particular for members from developing countries. Civil society
has historically been a neglected partner but is increasingly present today through
participation in national delegations or through the granting of observer status.

ITU’s mission covers technical, developmental and policy issues.4

Much of its authority derives from its World Conferences which review, revise, and adopt
regulation forming the basic framework for telecommunications, administrations and
operators in the provision of international telecommunications services.

It also establishes the technical characteristics and operational procedures for wireless
services, manages the global radio frequency spectrum and coordinates international
standard setting activities including standards for Internet Protocol (IP) networks and IP-
based systems.

Its Development Sector implements communications development projects funded by the
UN or other sources and publishes definitive information on telecommunications trends.5




2
    www.infodev.org
3
  http://www.iktu.int/members/index.html
4
  This section draws on the Telecommunications Regulation Handbook, Hank Inteven (ed.): McCarthy Tetrault,
World Bank, 2001, ISBN 0-9697178-7-3
5
  Two key sources of information are the World Telecommunications Development Report and Trends in
Telecommunications Reform published regularly by ITU.
                                             Annex III - 11
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            The ITU’s e-strategy6 shows how far it has moved from its technical
            mandate into broad areas of broad public concern

              (h) Foster the development of Internet Protocol (IP) networks and
                  services on all types of telecommunications networks.
              (i) Integrate the development of IP with societal applications to
                  enhance governmental, medical/health, educational, agricultural,
                  business and community services.
              (j) Enhance security and build confidence in the use of public
                  networks.
              (k) Continue the development of Multi-purpose community telecenters
                  (MCTs) and multipurpose platforms (MPPs) as a mechanism to
                  provide wider and affordable access to ICTs.
              (l) Enhance ICT literacy and increase public awareness on the
                  potentials of ICTs for socio-economic development.
              (m) Promote the establishment of a favorable legal environment for e-
                  applications.
              (n) In all applications, take into account the needs of rural, isolated
                  and poorly served areas and people with special needs (Gender,
                  Youths and Indigenous People)




6
    http://www.itu.int/ITU-D/e-strategy/
                                           Annex III - 12
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                                                                                         Program in ACP Countries




                                        Annex III
             The Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs)

The international development banks have a particular role within development, which is
to provide specific forms of capital investment, notably (as summarized by the World
Bank):
      Long-term loans, based on market interest rates, using funds borrowed on the
       international capital markets and re-lent to borrowing governments in developing
       countries;

      Very long-term loans (often termed credits), with interest rates well below market
       levels, funded through direct contributions from governments in donor countries;
       and

      Grants, mostly for technical assistance, advisory services or project preparation.

In effect, this means that their primary role is in facilitating and providing capital
investment for major projects such as infrastructure.          They have relatively little
experience in financing or managing projects which require limited capital or which focus
directly on poverty alleviation, because these do not form part of their core business.

There are four multilateral development banks – three in regions that include ACP
countries (the African Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank (both of which
refer to themselves as ADB) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), and one in
Europe. These are owned jointly by borrowing and donor countries. In addition, there are
a number of sub-regional banks which are mostly owned by borrowing countries: these
include the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the East African Development Bank
(EADB), the West African Development Bank (BOAD) and the Development Bank of Southern
Africa (DBSA).

The Asian Development Bank has defined poverty reduction as ‘the overarching goal of its
operations,’ and is providing support to member-countries to address the MDGs. However,
the scale of its intervention in ACP countries is very limited. These make up a tiny fraction
of its population coverage, and, although some are focused on MDG and poverty alleviation
issues, ICT sector and ICT4D projects feature in none of the 11 Pacific and Indian Ocean
island National Indicative Papers which are available.

The Asian Bank has published a strategy document Toward E-Development in Asia and the
Pacific outlining an ICT strategy for its region. This includes three strategic objectives, as
follows:

      Create an enabling environment by fostering (i) the development of innovative
       sector policies, (ii) the strengthening of public institutions; and (iii) the
       development of ICT facilities and related infrastructure, and networks.

      Build human resources to improve knowledge and skills, and to promote ICT-
       literacy and lifelong learning of citizens through E-learning and awareness
       programs.



                                        Annex III - 13
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      Develop ICT applications and information content for ADB                       supported
       projects/activities, e.g., poverty reduction and good governance.

It also puts forward a four-point action plan including a) e-readiness assessments in
selected member-countries; b) integration of ICT applications into the ADB’s activities and
systems; c) integration with other ICT-related activities already underway; and d) the
establishment of a ‘center for learning, information, communication and knowledge’ to
disseminate best practice in the region. However, as noted above, the Pacific islands form
a very small part of the Asian Bank’s area of responsibility, and there is no specific ICT
orientation in its discussion paper towards a Pacific Strategy for 2005-9.

Finally, the Asian Bank has some experience in managing trust funds, mostly on behalf of
Japan, and these include the Japan Fund for Information and Communication Technology.
This was established in 2001, with funding of approximately $10million for a three-year
period, with a stated purpose of redressing the digital divide.

Like the Asian Development Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank is primarily
concerned with non-ACP countries (only eight of the Caribbean ACP countries are
members). Only a small fraction of IDB funding has been allocated to ICTs since its
formation in the early 1960s (about 5% of the figure for energy, for example). However, it
has the strongest profile of the MDBs in ICTs and ICT4D. It has an Information Technology
for Development division and specific ICT programs such as ‘Telecenters for Socioeconomic
and Rural Development in Latin American and the Caribbean’ (in conjunction with FAO and
ITU) and an ‘Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Innovation Program for E-
Business and SME Development’, as well as articulating an ICT4D strategy within its region
and at fora such as WSIS. Some valuable studies of ICT issues have been undertaken
through the IBD, for example on the social impact of telecenter use.

IDB has considerable experience in the management of trust funds. These include the
'Italian Trust Fund for Information and Communication Technology for Development', which
was established in 2003 to develop and introduce new e-government solutions, models and
applications in seven Latin American and Caribbean Countries, and which is funded at
around US$3million.

None of the 50 or so projects approved by the Caribbean Development Bank since
December 2002 has an ICT focus, and only one of the 40 or so currently under
consideration does so (it is concerned with community radio in the small island of
Montserrat). However, the CDB’s activities are much smaller in scale and closer to the
point of delivery than those of the major MDBs. It also operates a Basic Needs Trust Fund,
financed by CIDA and its member-governments, which aims to spend around US$70million
on community projects (including telecenters) in its current funding period.

The development banks are least engaged in the ICT sector in Africa. The African
Development Bank has no strategy document focusing on ICTs comparable to its strategy
documents for other infrastructure sectors (such as energy and transport), and appears to
have no significant sector-specific experience or experience in relevant trust fund
management.

The experience of the sub-regional development banks in Africa is also limited. DBSA has
assisted in the development of regulatory benchmarks in the telecommunications sector in
its region and has a presence at international ICT conferences, but does not have a
substantial ICT sector portfolio.        EADB is very small and, though it lists
telecommunications infrastructure among sectors eligible for support, does not appear to
                                      Annex III - 14
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                                                                                        Program in ACP Countries




have significant activity in this area. BOAD similarly lacks any sectoral focus in this area.
None of the African development banks draws attention to the ICT sector in its
promotional or information materials.

During the early stages of this project, DGDev suggested that the international
development banks might be appropriate outsourced management agents for the ACP ICT
program. More recent discussions suggest that this is now less favored by DGDev, but the
possibility still needs consideration. The main issues would seem to be these:

   1.      The international development banks are fundamentally regional in character.
           Their USP in terms of a program such as this is their regional experience. Yet
           (see Part 3) the indications are that any proposals for regional activity would
           have to be managed through EDF Regional Indicative Programs, i.e. through the
           EU’s established regional partners (Cariforum rather than the Inter-American
           Development Bank; ECOWAS rather than BOAD).

   2.      There is no obvious means of establishing a coordinating mechanism that would
           bring the MDBs together so that they could jointly manage a global program.
           The management costs of doing so, in any case, would also probably be high.
           Nor could individual banks readily manage programs that went beyond their
           regional bases into those of other MDBs.

   3.      The MDBs’ purpose is to support large capital projects, particularly
           infrastructure. Even so, most of them – and especially those in Africa - have not
           played a substantial part in the ICT sector. More importantly, they lack
           expertise in the management of programs which are directly concerned with
           poverty alleviation, with the application of ICTs, or which are to be delivered
           through relatively small project allocations by relatively small organizations.
           (This does not mean, however, that they could not bring in appropriate
           expertise if they were charged with managing a trust fund of this kind.)

   4.      Some MDBs, notably the Asian and Inter-American Development Banks, do have
           significant experience in managing trust funds on behalf of governments in EU
           member-states. The African Development Bank and DBSA have much less
           experience of this kind.




                                       Annex III - 15

				
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