Kiribati Rapid eTrade Readiness Assessment

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The Kiribati Rapid eTrade Readiness Assessment focuses on examining seven key policy areas that are most relevant for e-commerce. Within each area, critical readiness gaps are identified and relevant recommendations are proposed to overcome barriers and bottlenecks to the growth of digital trade. Kiribati has yet to take advantage of the potential of e-commerce. The country could benefit substantially from e-commerce if it is able to accelerate the adoption of key measures aimed at supporting the development of an e-commerce ecosystem (e.g., e-commerce strategy, regulatory framework) and private sector investment (in infrastructure and access to finance). Among other benefits, e-commerce could fuel the development of the tourism and financial sectors, attract FDI, and increase employment in Kiribati. Despite the potential benefits provided by e-commerce, MSMEs may face barriers such as poor domestic and international logistics and limited access to financing.




The nation of Kiribati is at a crossroads: improved and affordable connectivity is a necessity rather than an option for its future economic and human development growth prospects, given that the level of geographic isolation and population dispersion is even more pronounced than other Pacific Island Nations surveyed by UNCTAD. Cognizant of this, the government has sped up the development response through enhanced mainstreaming of ICT and e-commerce in development plans, implementing a robust telecommunications sector reform, and reaching out to investors and development partners. Among other achievements, this resulted in increased voice/Internet (3G/4G) coverage, faster (?) Internet speeds, value-added services, and increased awareness of the power of the Internet in breaking isolation from markets.


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