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20 millions USD investment in a unified digital market

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20 millions USD investment in a unified digital market

The World Bank and Smart Africa are injecting 20 million USD into bolstering digital skills, aiming to foster a unified African digital market. This collaborative effort seeks to promote inclusive digital education continent-wide.

Advancing Africa’s digital landscape

The ambitious partnership between the World Bank and Smart Africa aims to elevate the Smart Africa Digital Academy (SADA) from a national to a regional model for digital learning and skill development.

This strategic collaboration, supported by a generous 20 million grant USD, marks a pivotal moment in the Regional Digital Integration Program for West Africa’s mission. The initiative strives to integrate digital markets across the continent, fostering transparency and resilience in a unified digital market.

The program’s objectives include empowering 30,000 policymakers and investors from all African countries, targeting 40 % female participation. Additionally, the initiative aims to bridge the continent’s digital skills gap, catalyzing an inclusive and environmentally sustainable digital transformation.

Advancing digital unity in Africa

Since its establishment in 2020, SADA has been a leading force in digital education across Africa, equipping over 7,000 individuals in 35 countries with essential skills. With substantial financial backing from the World Bank, SADA’s reach and impact are poised to expand significantly.

This initiative exemplifies the shared dedication of Smart Africa and the World Bank to propel Africa’s digital transformation agenda forward. Through a holistic and inclusive approach to digital education and skill development, Lacina Koné, CEO of Smart Africa, underscores the critical role of digital skills in shaping the continent’s digital future. Koné describes the partnership with the World Bank as a significant stride in SADA’s journey toward cultivating a skilled digital workforce.

Pioneering digital education

The scaling up of SADA signifies a strategic shift toward skills-oriented training, addressing the African job market’s current and future demands. This approach is relevant in the post-COVID-19 era, highlighting the imperative of integrating ICT and digital resources into African educational frameworks.

SADA’s comprehensive training portfolio, tailored to foster talents in science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics, is poised to redefine digital education for educators and learners alike.

By targeting diverse demographics, including policymakers, youth, entrepreneurs, digital professionals, and the general public, SADA lays the groundwork for a transformative digital skills revolution across Africa.

Collaboration for digital transformation

The World Bank and Smart Africa partnership signifies more than just financial investment. It embodies a shared vision of a digitally interconnected Africa. Boutheina Guermazi, Director of Regional Integration for Africa and the Middle East at the World Bank, underscores the initiative’s role in promoting regional integration and empowering communities and businesses to thrive in the digital era.

By dismantling barriers and nurturing a vibrant digital ecosystem, this collaboration is positioned to expedite the establishment of a unified digital market, ensuring that Africa’s digital transformation is inclusive and sustainable.

As the Smart Africa Digital Academy (SADA) embarks on this new phase, it aims to equip both current and future African workforce with the digital skills necessary for success in the global digital economy. This initiative represents a significant stride towards realizing the vision of a unified digital market in Africa, heralding an era of unprecedented growth and innovation across the continent.

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