Where is the MENA region at?

Snapshots of the World Development Report 2021

The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region stands at an important crossroads in its digital transformation journey. Most countries are more connected than ever, broadband access is advancing and data traffic is growing exponentially. However, to harness the development potential of these growing volumes of data, critical gaps in the legal and regulatory frameworks for the creation, use and reuse of data need to be addressed. According to World Development Report 2021: Data for a better life, this ecosystem includes data infrastructure policy, data legal and regulatory framework and related economic policy framework, as well as data institutions supporting implementation. Effectively harnessing data to drive development requires forging a new social contract that seeks to deliver the potential value of data equitably while fostering trust by protecting against data misuse.

In this regional webinar, the World Development Report team will present information on the World Development Report 2021 and its relevance to the MENA region. A green, resilient and inclusive recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic will depend on the region’s potential to effectively harness its data for better policy making, private sector growth, and more efficient and transparent service delivery. The webinar aims to help key regional stakeholders forge their own new social contracts that help realize the potential value of data while being grounded in the principles of trust and fairness.

This regional workshop is designed to raise awareness of the RDM 2021 policy messages and promote dialogue with regional policy makers, as a means of identifying possible downstream commitments for World Bank teams and could be delivered in local languages ​​depending on needs. The workshop will be accompanied by the publication of a region-specific information note which brings together all the geographically relevant conclusions and messages of the RDM 2021 translated into local languages.

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