Governments must address inequality in the digital age

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UAE ambassador to the UN urges states to implement roadmap to transparent internet governance

UAE ambassador to the UN, Lana Nusseibeh. UN
UAE ambassador to the UN, Lana Nusseibeh. UN

Governments must work closely with businesses and civil society to address inequality in the digital age, the UAE’s ambassador to the UN has said.

Lana Nusseibeh was speaking at the United Nations following the release of a report on digital cooperation.

The Age of Digital Interdependence was compiled by a panel of 20 experts led by Melinda Gates of the Microsoft Foundation, and Jack Ma, the executive chair of the Internet giant Alibaba.

It proposes a Declaration for Digital Interdependence between states, private sector, civil society, academics and the technical community.

The proposal is a roadmap for transparent internet governance to encourage thoughtful and free discussion.

It stresses marginalised groups and developing countries must have a voice in how technology develops so digital advances alleviate inequality and do not increase it.

“Multilateralism must adapt if it is to stay relevant and reflect the networked world we represent,” said Ms Nusseibeh, who is also the UAE’s Permanent Representative to the UN.

She urged states to implement the report’s 12 recommendations.

“The panel identifies the most pressing issues that require our attention, such as ensuring that no one is left behind in the digital age and that UN Member States develop coordinated responses with non-government stakeholders to address a range of cyber risks,” she said.

“Meanwhile, we must not lose out on the opportunities that these technologies can offer us all.”

The report make recommendations in inclusiveness, capacity-building, human rights, digital trust and security and global digital cooperation.

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