The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the digital transformation and underscored its importance for mitigating the economic slowdown, sustaining wellbeing, and speeding up recovery. Governments, smart policymaking, as well as regional cooperation play an essential role in helping to both enable digital transformation to occur and in facilitating access to technology.
Digital technologies including information and communication technologies (ICT) for development are cutting across many sectors. Progress on certain SDGs can be traced and correlated with ICT progress, especially in monitoring SDG 9: Infrastructure, Industrialization and Innovation, SDG 4: Quality Education and SDG 3: Good Health and Well-being, which suggests that these may be the areas with the greatest potential for leveraging ICT for sustainable development.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development recognizes that natural disasters can be an impediment to realizing the development goals. Earthquakes, landslides, floods, and droughts have detrimental impacts on overall country macroeconomic factors and further disproportionately affect the poor and marginalized groups. Therefore, it is imperative to develop multi-hazard assessments that address and map both physical and social vulnerabilities.
Ms Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations in her video statement for the opening session of the Digital Almaty Forum on 31 January 2020 has highlighted that the needs of landlocked developing countries and Central Asia form a central pillar of