ICT Critical for Africa's Business Processes

The World Bank's Doing Business Ranking show that countries like Malaysia, Singapore and United Arab Emirates which have used ICTs extensively have seen their economies rankings improving.

Assistant professor at the World Trade Organisation, Gupta noted that countries that had embraced ICTs were rising on doing business indices.

The use of ICTs in Africa has seen economies such as Mauritius becoming more competitive and successful economies in the region. Mauritius has realised a remarkable economic transformation from a mono crop economy to an emerging status economy due to booming sectors like information technology. "ICTs are important in the fields of business and trade in the sense that most processes until now have been manual which consumes a lot of time with examples such as documentation filing, processing of claims and filing of tax returns," Gupta noted. "All these processes are now automated with the use of technologies and related systems which has reduced significant time in processing."

Gupta added that ICTs were making it easy especially in international trade as information exchange was being facilitated easily. "Previously there were challenges with regards to interchange and exchange in international trade between different agencies but with the advent of ICTs these challenges have been averted as different agencies can now easily exchange messages," he noted.

However, Gupta lamented the slow pace in embracing ICTs among other economies urging countries to scale up in utilisation of ICTs innovations. "Not all countries are at the same platform as far as the use of information technology is concerned, some countries use ICTs at a greater extent with some employing technology at a lesser extent," he said.

Gupta noted that certain countries were facing challenges with acquiring the much needed human resources, infrastructure and financial requirements to improve their ICTs infrastructure. Gupta also noted that it is important for other countries to learn from those who have done well so as to improve business processes.

SOURCE: http://www.cnbcafrica.com/news/technology/2014/08/13/icts-mauritius-business-processes/