The DCO Council formally announced and welcomed the accession of two new Member States, the Republic of The Gambia and The Republic of Ghana. The organization now represents 13 nations and serves around 600 million people with a collective GDP of more than $2 trillion. Marking the 2nd General Assembly of the DCO, were the Ministers and Government Representatives of the Digital Cooperation Organization. This included the Kingdom of Bahrain, the Republic of Cyprus, the Republic of Djibouti, the Republic of The Gambia, the Republic of Ghana, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, the State of Kuwait, the Kingdom of Morocco, the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Sultanate of Oman, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Republic of Rwanda, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The 2nd General Assembly was held in Riyadh on 5th February 2023, under the chairmanship of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The member states reaffirmed the importance of multilateral cooperation to encourage the sustainable and inclusive growth of the digital economy. At the general assembly, it was acknowledged that the role of multilateralism was an enabler of digital inclusion and transformation and a facilitator for exchanging knowledge and active dialogues. It was also recognized that the outcomes of the Bridging the Gap Report highlighted the importance of cooperation in driving sustainable and inclusive growth of the global digital economy.
In addition, the empowering of entrepreneurs and MSMEs is key, who make up over 90% of all businesses. This is crucial for their success and growth in a dynamic digital economy. The Ministers and Government Representatives of the Digital Cooperation Organization also agreed to launch the DCO 2030 Roadmap to:
- Promote common interests and advocate for advanced cooperation on all aspects of the digital economy at local, regional, and global levels between countries and all other stakeholders of the digital economy, including private actors.
- Build regulatory frameworks and business environments that support innovation, entrepreneurship, investment, efficient data flow, and mobility of the digitally skilled workforce – among other growth levers – to increase opportunities for millions of people and businesses and accelerate the growth of the digital economy in a larger cross-border digital market.
- Ensure the digital economy’s inclusiveness, fairness, and trustworthiness so its growth is sustainable, benefits all, and contributes to prosperity. The DCO will be recognized as the reference for empowering people and communities while advocating for a digital economy that respects Planetary Boundaries.
The 2nd General Assembly was the first-ever in-person meeting of the DCO Member States, marking two years of progress for the international organization which has been founded to help achieve social prosperity and growth by unifying efforts to advance and promote interest in the digital economy. The monumental event took place at the Fairmont Hotel in Riyadh and reflected the qualitative leaps made by the member states in its shift toward a tech-powered economy.
Deemah AlYahya, Secretary-General of the DCO said, “Digital technologies have immense potential to transform economies and empower groups including women and entrepreneurs with new opportunities, especially that 70% of the new value created in the global economy over the next decade will be based on digitally enabled platforms so it is of critical importance that all nations have the same ability to leverage the power of digitalization to achieve their goals. The DCO was formed to accelerate digital transformation through collaboration and knowledge sharing among all stakeholders to empower nations to develop strategies and programs to drive their own digital development and equally participate in the global digital economy.”
“I am very pleased that the Ministers from the DCO Member States will convene in Riyadh, the headquarters of the DCO, for the 2nd General Assembly to mark two years of progress towards the DCO’s goals, and to continue the discussions on how we can achieve digital prosperity for all in collaboration with our international observers from the ecosystem stakeholders representing the private sector, academia, think tanks and civil society organizations,” AlYahya added.
Focused on empowering youth, women, and entrepreneurs, leveraging the accelerative power of the digital economy and leapfrogging with innovation, The DCO is a global multilateral organization founded in November 2020 that aims to enable digital prosperity for all by accelerating the inclusive growth of the digital economy.