MARCH 2016


High Speed Internet for Palau
ADB approved two loans last year amounting to $25 million for a submarine cable project which will support the
development of a fiber-optic cable system linking Palau to the Internet cable hub in Guam. Read more.

High Speed Internet for Samoa
In 2015, ADB approved last year a $25 million grant for a submarine cable project which will support the development of a fiber-optic cable system linking Samoa to Fiji’s international submarine cable network, giving Samoa fast and affordable Internet access. The project will be cofinanced by the World Bank and the Government
of Australia. Read more.

Extending Mobile Telecom Services across Myanmar
ADB and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) are providing loans of $300 million to Ooredoo Myanmar
for the rollout of a mobile telecommunication network across Myanmar using advanced 3G technology which
will help extend affordable telecom services across the country. Read more.

Web-Based Customs Management System in Nepal
On 26 January, Nepal Finance Minister and ADB Governor Bishnu Prasad Paudel launched last 26 January
(during International Customs Day) a web-based customs management system, the ASYCUDA World pilot, funded by ADB's Subregional Transport Enhancement Project. The pilot is expected to enhance customs
control capabilities like risk-assessment and make processes like accounting, post-clearance audit, and statistics
and information management more robust.


Blog poll: Is technology the answer to growing more food with less water?
Readers were asked what they believed is the best way to grow more food with less water in Asia coinciding
with last month’s Second Asian Irrigation Forum (AIF2). Read more.

New technologies are revolutionizing education – or are they?
While some experts believe that new technologies will profoundly transform educational models, others are
taking a more skeptical stance, arguing that the advent of radio or television had raised similar speculations. This
blog, identify channels through which new technologies can help to improve education systems.

Online gender monitoring in Bhutan can pave the way for Asia
An Bhutan, a web-based gender monitoring system is being tried out to track the progress of gender mainstreaming efforts in national government agencies, and generate consolidated reports on activity, budget, implementation status, indicators of success, and expenditure. Read more.


Presentation on ICT utilization for financial inclusion
NEC Corporation presented a case study on a project in India on how a sustainable business correspondent model enhances financial access. NEC also discussed how this ICT platform can support infrastructure in agriculture,
health, and education. The presentation was organized by ADB’s Sector Advisory Service Division and held in
ADB Headquarters on 16 February.

Use of ICT applications in the power sector
A representative of Huawei Technologies discussed ICT solutions in the power sector, based on the latest cutting
-edge technology and experiences, including advanced metering infrastructure. The applications will help distribution utilities cut commercial losses, increase revenues, and enhance financial viability. The seminar was organized by the ADB’s Energy Sector Group and held in ADB Headquarters on16 February.

Growing more crop per drop - how we can measure it
Wim Bastiaanssen, professor of Global Water Accounting, UNESCO-IHE, talked about using modern and innovative technology to produce more food with less water, at a presentation held in ADB Headquarters on 23 February. The session focused on how remote sensing and satellite technology can be used to improve crop water
productivity and irrigation systems planning. The presentation was organized by ADB’s Water Sector Group.

Forum on ICT for social protection delivery
The Forum was held from 2-3 March in Nepal, where focal persons from the government, partners from the private sector, ILO, UNICEF and World Bank participated in the policy discussions. ADB’s Country Director in Nepal,
Kenichi Yokoyama, highlighted opportunities for Nepal to capitalize on ICT innovations to improve monitoring
and delivery of social protection investments.


Integrated Information and Communication Technology Strategies for Competitive Higher Education
in Asia and the Pacific

According to the report, while ICT systems can contribute significantly to the domestic and international competitiveness of higher education institutions (HEI), the positive impact of this contribution critically depends on the
existence of a well-articulated, institution-wide ICT integration plan that takes account of all of the functions of the
institution concerned. Read more.

Design of eGovernance Master Plan for the Republic of the Union of Myanmar
This report was completed under a technical assistance (TA) to Myanmar to support the preparation of an eGovernance master plan and review of ICT programs and facilities in four universities identified by the government.
The report provides key lessons from other countries, high-level assessment of the current state of Myanmar
against key dimensions, outlines key recommendations and key principles and guidelines on handling the transition
to the recommended e-Governance roadmap, and provides an implementation roadmap. Read the report. The TA’s
final completion report is available online .

Enhancing Community Resource Mapping through GIS
The report evaluates appropriate ICT and GIS tools to complement the Philippines KALAHI-CIDSS National Community-Driven Development Program situation analysis. The report was prepared under the technical assistance on
community-driven development in ADB developing member countries.

World Development Report 2016: Digital Dividends
Those in extreme poverty have the most to gain from better communication and access to information. The report
shows that while the digital revolution has forged ahead, the regulations that promote entry and competition, the
skills that enable workers to access and leverage the new economy, have not kept pace. It further finds that the full
benefits of the information and communications transformation will not be realized unless countries continue to

Biz groups, think tanks weigh in: How can PH broadband improve?
During a press briefing in Makati City on 24 February, proposed solutions to fix low-quality broadband include
amending laws and leveling the playing field were raised. During the briefing, business groups also launched the
Philippine Broadband: A Policy Brief. Read the article in Rappler.

Philippine Broadband: A Policy Brief
This policy brief, authored by Grace Mirandilla-Santos, vice president for policy of the Internet Society (ISOC) – Philippines Chapter, is about Philippine broadband service, its real and potential benefits, problems and challenges,
and recommendations on how to address them.


Unleashing the potential of the internet in Central Asia
Peter Lovelock, Director, Telecommunications Research Project is the main author of the report which focuses on
Central and West Asian region. He will present main findings of the study and provide policy recommendations to
shift from basic internet connectivity toward a more interconnected digital economy, which can be used to advance social and economic goals. The presentation will be on 8 March, between 12:00-1:00 at Meeting Room
4256W in ADB headquarters.

Digital Strategies for Development Summit 2016
Asia Society for Social Improvement and Sustainable Transformation (ASSIST), together with a group of partners,
is organizing the 2016 Summit which will be held on 8-10 June at EDSA Shangri-La Hotel. The Summit will present initiatives and opportunities for collaboration in the development and use of innovative and inclusive ICT
solutions for development. The 2016 Summit will be the third ICT regional conference of this kind.

Digital Works is a monthly email alert prepared by the ICT Team based in the Social Development, Governance and Gender Division in the
Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department of the Asian Development Bank. It highlights projects, knowledge products,
events, and news on ICT for Development.
The views expressed in this newsletter do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of ADB. By making any designation of, or reference to,
a particular territory of geographic area in this document, ADB does not intend to make any judgments as to the legal of other status of any
territory or area.