Despite the successes recorded by the global digital revolution, more people have remained poor.
The situation defeats the ongoing drive worldwide to end poverty, a new report has sought to suggest.
Put together by the World Bank, it states among other things that despite gains made in the last twenty years – globally – very little of that has been able to rub off policies to translate into economic growth and liberty.
The latest findings touch on how the gains made digitally have not been of help to an increasing middle class as well as institutions and agencies who play parallel roles towards poverty eradication.
Some 3.2 billion are actively online, the report says, but adds that a scary 4 billion are still in the dark as to how the web could be of help. This the report argued is an indication of more work needed to be done.
An extensive report, it covers into detail the role of the web as an ally towards a hungry-free world.
Some 70% of the poorest households in the world can buy a device without much difficulty, but same cannot be said for social services.
In recent years, online services and digital tools have enabled a large segment of the population access to new opportunities in many African countries.
This is particularly the case of the digital M-Pesa payment in Kenya. This platform has reduced physical cash trading by 80%. But there is also the success of e-commerce services, and even e-health and e-education initiatives.
Digital has its advantages and the World Bank does not reject it.
The group president of the World Bank Jim Yong Kim in the report reminds States and their partners that wealth creation is still subject to compliance if it is to be such an important tool.
The Digital Dividend, she adds, emphasizes the need to continue to invest in infrastructure, education and population health, promote good governance and work to improve the business climate.
Another point for African economies the report argued, is the importance of how much currency is spent for the acquisition of various technologies necessary for internet and digital tools.