Progress evident but there is further room for improvement

International Telecommunication Union ranks Belarus 52nd worldwide (up six places on 2008) for its level of information-telecommunication technologies

By Irina Yurkovskaya

The ICT Development Index is calculated upon 11 parameters, showing progress in the field of information-computer technologies. These include access, the level of development and the population’s skill in operating ICT. Over the past two years, the report states that some developing states have achieved significant improvements, with the pace of growth outstripping the average regarding the access sub-index and the use sub-index. This indicates that these societies are moving with the times. Pleasingly, Belarus is among these countries; we have also been recognised for achieving significant growth in the number of broadband communication subscribers.

Belarus enjoys good results across all three parameters. Regarding the IDI access sub-index, we’ve advanced by 10 positions (from 61st place to 51st) and from 72nd to 57th place for the use sub-index. Meanwhile, we’ve improved by three points in the skills sub-index. Among CIS states, Belarus is second only to Russia, which is ranked 47th.

As regards the IDI price basket, Belarus is ranked 56th (having an index of 2). The most accessible services are registered in Monaco (0.2) while Niger offers the lowest access (71.6). Countries with comparatively high prices for information-computer technologies demonstrate low figures of access and use. Meanwhile, affordable access brings greater use.

The Communications Ministry is convinced that Belarus could join the top 50, as Pavel Petrulevich, the Deputy Head of the Telecommunications Department, explains, “Our programme of accelerated development in the field of information-telecommunication technologies is aimed at the International Telecommunication Union’s rating — among others. We’ve just begun to analyse the details and, of course, are primarily focusing on those aspects in which we lag behind.”

As is traditional, the list is topped by South Korea and Sweden (1st and 2nd places respectively). Iceland has shifted from 7th to 3rd position, with the fourth and fifth places are shared by Denmark and Finland. Among our neighbours, Estonia enjoys the highest position — 33rd (down from 28th in 2008) while Lithuania is ranked 35th (keeping its position from 2008). Poland is 38th (up from 41st), Latvia is 40th (down from 39th) and Russia is ranked 47th (up from 49th).

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