Connect with us

Tech News

Digital Technology Key to Supporting Thailand’s Recovery from COVID-19

Avatar photo

Published

on

After being severely hit by a surge of COVID-19 cases in the third quarter of 2021, Thailand’s economic activity has subsequently rebounded and is expected to grow by 1.0 percent this year, according to the World Bank’s latest Thailand Economic Monitor “Living with COVID in a Digital World” published today. Going forward, the adoption of digital technologies has the potential to support Thailand’s recovery from COVID-19 and ensure a more competitive economy over the longer-term.

Economic activity is expected to return to its pre-pandemic levels end-2022, with progress on vaccinations and a resumption of tourist arrivals providing support for the recovery. Growth is projected to accelerate to 3.9 percent in 2022 and 4.3 percent in 2023, driven by a recovery in service sector activity. If the current pace of vaccinations of around 750,000 per day is maintained, and in the absence of a further resurgence of COVID-19, consumer confidence and international tourist confidence is expected to strengthen.

The report emphasizes that further vaccine distribution and policies that continue to protect citizens are the key catalysts for the economy to achieve the pre-COVID output level by the end of 2022.

“The economy is expected to gain momentum in the fourth quarter of 2021, fueled by domestic travel and increased local mobility,” said Kiatipong Ariyapruchya, World Bank Senior Economist for Thailand. “The pace of the recovery will depend on the extent of the pick-up in foreign tourists and domestic consumption.”

Thailand’s poverty rate is estimated to have remained stable at 6.4 percent in 2021, with an estimated 160,000 people falling into poverty since the onset of the pandemic in 2020. However, a recent 2021 World Bank household phone survey indicates that the impact of the pandemic has been particularly severe on vulnerable groups. Overall, over half of the 2,000 respondents were affected by job losses, temporary work stoppage, and reduced number of working hours or reduced pay.

“While scarring from the pandemic shock could be long-lasting, especially in terms of job losses and school closures,” said Birgit Hansl, World Bank Country Manager for Thailand. “Digital-led development can help offset these scarring impacts can ensure that growth is inclusive and equitable.”

Since the pandemic started in March 2020, 30 percent of all digital service consumers in Thailand were new and consumption among internet users was 90 percent, the second highest in the region after Singapore. According to the report, the pandemic has accelerated the adoption of digital technologies in Thailand, in large part as a response to extended mobility restrictions and to keep operations running.

The report recommends that while the government has taken several steps to advance the digital agenda, more can be done to develop digital services and spur the digitalization of businesses. This includes promoting competition and incentivizing interoperability in digital markets, raising the availability of digital and complementary skills, and enhancing access to innovation finance.

Continue Reading
Comments

Tech News

EU and Singapore launch Digital Partnership

Avatar photo

Published

on

EU and Singapore are strengthening their cooperation as strategic partners. Following the announcement of a new Digital Partnership between the EU and Singapore by President von der Leyen and Prime Minister Lee at the EU-ASEAN summit in December 2022, Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton and Singapore Minister of Industry and Trade S Iswaran signed a Digital Partnership that will strengthen cooperation between the EU and Singapore on digital technology areas. Executive Vice-President Dombrovskis and Minister Iswaran also signed Digital Trade Principles. A key deliverable of the Digital Partnership, the Principles seek to facilitate the free flow of goods and services in the digital economy, while upholding privacy.

The EU-Singapore Digital Partnership reflects the dynamic relation the EU has built with an open and outward-oriented economy and a vibrant logistics and financial hub in South-East Asia. Both sides have agreed to work together on critical areas such as semiconductors, trusted data flows and data innovation, digital trust, standards, digital trade facilitation, digital skills for workers, and the digital transformation of businesses and public services. This Partnership is in line with the 2030 Digital Compass, the European way for the Digital Decade and represents another key step in the implementation of the EU’s Indo-Pacific Strategy.

The Digital Partnership will, for example:

  • Enhance research cooperation in cutting-edge technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and semiconductors;
  • Promote cooperation in regulatory approaches such as in the field of AI and Electronic Identification (eID);
  •  Foster investments in resilient and sustainable digital infrastructures, including data centres and submarine telecommunications cables for connectivity between the EU and Southeast Asia;
  • Ensure trusted cross border data flows in compliance with data protection rules and other public policy objectives;
  • Promote information exchange and cooperation in the field of cybersecurity;
  • Build alliances in international organisations and standardisation fora;
  • Facilitate digital trade, including by working towards joint projects such as paperless trading, electronic invoicing, electronic payments, electronic transactions framework.

Following the signature of the Partnership, an inaugural Digital Partnership Council was held, which set the priority areas of cooperation for the year ahead. It was co-chaired by Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton and Singapore Minister of Industry and Trade S Iswaran. Singapore and the EU agreed on key priorities of implementation for 2023: exploring common approaches in e-identification and in Artificial Intelligence governance as well as working on projects to facilitate digital trade and SME’s digital transformation.

The signature of the Digital Trade Principles represents a first tangible outcome of our digital partnership and a key step in the implementation of the EU’s Indo-Pacific Strategy.  The principles demonstrate that the EU and Singapore share the same commitment to an open, fair and competitive digital economy, without unjustified trade barriers.

Background

The EU-Singapore Digital Partnership is the third signed with key partners in Asia. The first digital partnership was concluded in May 2022 with Japan during the 28th EU-Japan Summit, and the second with the Republic of Korea in November 2022. The Partnerships establish an annual high-level meeting – the Digital Partnership Council – led by Commissioner Breton on the EU side and the relevant Minister for each of the three partner countries. The Digital Partnership Councils provide the political steer, set the priorities for implementation and take stock of the progress achieved.

Continue Reading

Tech News

Satya Nadella Says AI Golden Age Is Here and ‘It’s Good for Humanity’

Avatar photo

Published

on

The cutting-edge chatbot ChatGPT is capturing the world’s imagination. The new artificial intelligence site amassed 1 million users in just five days after its recent launch. It is but one of a dozen AI-driven so-called “killer apps” that will transform human productivity and the future of work.

ChatGPT answers complex questions via short prompts on a vast array of topics, and even writes lyrics and poetry. Underpinned by generative models such as GPT-3 and GPT-3.5, it is the most conspicuous example of technology dubbed generative AI.

Satya Nadella, Microsoft Chairman and CEO, in a session at the Annual Meeting, told Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum, that a golden age of AI is under way and will redefine work as we know it.

“The future of work is not just about technology and tools,” he said. It’s about new management practices and sensibilities to the workplace.”

“Technology will provide more and more ways to bring people together,” he said. Public-private cooperation itself is moving virtual. The Forum’s Global Collaboration Village, for example, harnesses the power of the metaverse as a platform for collaborative, inclusive and effective international action.

“Microsoft is opening up access to new AI tools like ChatGPT,” said Nadella. “I see these technologies acting as a co-pilot, helping people do more with less.”

He provided two anecdotes of recent use cases of GPT technology. The first is an expert coder from Silicon Valley who improved their productivity by 80% by using the model to help write better code faster. The second was an Indian farmer who was able to use a GPT interface to access an opaque government programme via the internet, despite only speaking a local dialect.

“AI is just at the beginning of the S-curve,” said Nadella. The near-term and long-term opportunities are enormous, he added.

Looking ahead, he said Microsoft intends to lead on quantum computing. Microsoft has all the building blocks for a next-generation quantum computer. He said: “Microsoft will achieve quantum supremacy and aims to build a general-purpose quantum computer.”

On safety and security, Nadella said the operating principle for protecting critical infrastructure should be to assume the worst – “have zero trust”. “Safety and security needs to be included right at the design stage,” he said.

Sustainability is at the core of the business. “By 2050 Microsoft aims to not just be carbon-neutral but carbon-negative.” Last year the tech giant released “Cloud for Sustainability”, bringing together a growing set of environmental, social and governance (ESG) capabilities across the Microsoft cloud portfolio plus solutions from the firm’s global ecosystem.

Continue Reading

Tech News

Cybercrime Initiative to Boost Coordination between Private Sector and Law Enforcement

Avatar photo

Published

on

In an effort to tackle rising cybercrime levels, the World Economic Forum launched today at the Annual Meeting 2023 an initiative to map cybercriminal activities and identify joint public and private sector responses.

Building on the expertise of the Forum’s Partnership against Cybercrime, the Cybercrime Atlas initiative will provide a platform for leading cybercrime investigators, national and international law enforcement agencies, and global businesses to share knowledge, generate policy recommendations and identify opportunities for coordinated action to fight cyberthreats.

“The Cybercrime Atlas is a collaborative research initiative that gathers and collates information about the cybercriminal ecosystem and major threat actors operating today,” said Jeremy Jurgens, Managing Director, World Economic Forum. “The insights generated will help promote opportunities for greater cooperation between the private sector and law enforcement to address cybercrime.”

Cybercrime, such as the ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline in May 2021 that caused US President Joe Biden to declare a state of emergency, is a threat to national security, public organizations and businesses of all sizes. Despite the amount of digital data collected on cybercriminal activities worldwide, the effort to fight it is often uncoordinated, disjointed and dispersed. The Cybercrime Atlas aims to map the cybercrime landscape, covering criminal operations, structures and networks.

First announced at San Francisco’s RSA Conference in June 2022, the Cybercrime Atlas has benefited from a year of pro bono analysis of 13 criminal groups by cybercrime investigators. Their approach and findings have been welcomed by law enforcement agencies.

“This initiative underlines the need for an enhanced multi-sector approach to combat the increasing cybercrime threat,” said Jürgen Stock, Secretary-General, International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL). “A global solution must include private sector insights to enable law enforcement to prevent, detect, investigate and disrupt cybercrime.”

The secretariat for the Cybercrime Atlas initiative will be hosted by the World Economic Forum for the next 2-3 years, with the support of Fortinet, Microsoft, PayPal and Santander, until it is sufficiently established to become an independent platform.

“The Cybercrime Atlas is an important initiative that will aid industry, law enforcement, and government agencies by providing a first-of-its-kind visibility to disrupt cybercriminals across their ecosystem and infrastructure,” said Ken Xie, Chief Executive Officer, Fortinet. “A global and unified effort will make it easier to get beyond the obstacles that shield cybercriminals.”

The Forum’s Partnership against Cybercrime initiative brings together a dedicated community to drive momentum for a public-private partnership to combat cybercrime.

“Cybercriminals work in the shadows and exploit vulnerabilities to inflict devastating attacks. The Cybercrime Atlas provides an important forum that brings the public and private sectors together to share actionable information and leverage cross-sector data, capabilities and expertise, crucial to disrupting cybercrime quickly, and at scale,” said Brad Smith, Vice-Chair and President, Microsoft.

“To mitigate and disrupt global cybercrime in today’s interconnected world, we need robust platforms to share intelligence and facilitate more meaningful institutional collaboration,” added Assaf Keren, Chief Information Security Officer and Vice-President, Enterprise Cyber Security, PayPal. “The Cybercrime Atlas represents a key next step in this work and an opportunity to unite global businesses, law enforcement and experts around concrete opportunities to protect the world’s citizens and their safety.”

“Given the global nature of cyberthreats, increasingly public-private collaboration is the best way to combat cybercrime,” said Dirk Marzluf, Group Chief Operating and Technology Officer, Banco Santander. “Organizations must look beyond their perimeter and combine efforts and resources with businesses, law enforcement and government.”

Continue Reading

Publications

Latest

World News56 mins ago

Sergey Lavrov: ‘If you want peace, always be ready to defend yourself’

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov gave an exclusive interview to Sputnik on Thursday, February 2. The conversation took place at...

World News2 hours ago

More Americans believe US provides ‘too much support’ to Ukraine

A growing portion of Americans think that the U.S. is giving too much support to Ukraine, as the Biden administration...

International Law4 hours ago

Will COPUOS five-year mission produce a new “international governance instrument” for outer space resources?

Introduction During its 2022 session, the Legal Subcommittee (LSC) of the United Nation’s Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer...

New Social Compact6 hours ago

Misinformation Backfire on the COVID-19 Vaccine – Exposed

The Government of Canada continues a relentless effort to denigrate opposition to COVID-19 vaccines by sourcing The Council of Canadian...

Economy8 hours ago

The Crippled Economy

Lack of money is the root of all evils. Facts do not seize to exist because they’re ignored. Lack of...

Europe10 hours ago

The Giedroyć-Mieroszewski Doctrine and Poland’s Response to Russia’s Assault on Ukraine

Although they seem similar, there is a fundamental difference between the Brzezinski Doctrine and the Giedroyć -Mieroszewski Doctrine. Whereas the Brzezinski...

Economy11 hours ago

From unidimensional to 3D: the contours of the post-Bretton Woods world

The start of the year 2023 was marked by a series of statements coming from representatives of BRICS countries concerning...

Trending