Digital Economy

Online Sessions

27 oct. 2020 time: 13:30 pm – 14:30 pm CET

Session 1: Building a Regional digital economy at the interplay of governments & businesses

Moderator Mr. Dragan Jovanović, Deutsche Telekom
Ms. Odeta Barbullushi, National Coordinator MAP-REA
Ms. Natalia Panina, PS&HC General Manager, Middle & Eastern Europe (SAP)
Mr. Mihailo Jovanovic, Director – Office for IT and eGovernment, Prime Minister office, Serbia
Mr. Vasko Kronevski, CEO Nextsense North Macedonia
Mr. Safet Gërxhaliu, Chamber investment forum wb6, Kosovo*
Ms. Dina Tsybulskaya, CEO Crnogorski Telekom, Montenegro

This panel discussed the challenges of building a regional Digital Economy and successfully adopting data-driven business models and use cases to drive the region’s path towards the digital era. Against this background, the panel addressed the role of governments and businesses to ensure a Digital Economy that benefits consumers and creates economic prosperity in the region. Which political initiatives need to be tackled jointly and unilaterally by the local governments? What are the relevant regional and local obstacles? How can governments stimulate innovation in the region and where does the private sector come in? The panel  presented best practice policies and regulations from Serbia and North Macedonia. The importance of the private sector for the development and progress of the digital economy in the region and new digital business models was closely examined. Inputs were also provided by the Chambers Investment Forum, the voice of the Western Balkan`s business community with strategies to influence policy-making.

27 oct. 2020 time:14:45 pm – 15:30 pm CET

Session 2: Digital Transformation for the Public Sector and Innovative Practice (RESPA)

Moderated by: Mr. Goran Pastrovic, ReSPA Programme Manager and Ms. Lejla Sadiku, Programme Specialist, Innovation, UNDP Regional Bureau for Europe and Central Asia
Mr. Vladimir Vulic, Multisectoral analysis of the WB administrations in the situation of COVID-19, ReSPA Senior eGovernment expert and Co-founder of Digitalizuj.ME;
Ms. Nadica Dujovic, ReSPA Senior Expert in Communications, Role of Crisis Communications in the pandemic situation;
Mrs. Mirlinda Karcanaj, General Director, National Agency on Information Society, Albania
Mr. Denis Turkanovic, Assistant Minister, Ministry of Scientific and Technological Development, Higher Education and Information Society of the entity of Republika Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina;
Mr. Slobodan Markovic, Digital Transformation Expert, UNDP Accelerator Lab in Serbia.UNDP;
Mr. Kemal Bajramovic, Head of Experimentation at UNDP Accelerator Lab in Bosnia and Herzegovina;
Mr. Darko Mrvaljevic, Regional EU expert NALAS, SEE Local Governments in Post COVID-19 Socio-Economic Recovery – NALAS survey

Covid-19 has strengthened digital transformation in public service delivery, at a global scale. It has become clear that the world needs to use technology and digital tools, to solve the large number of challenges we’re facing. ReSPA, UNDP and NALAS have taken an active role in identifying the needs of their stakeholders in this situation of pandemic, produced different reports, organized several important online events and provided valuable and practical recommendations for the follow up.

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27 oct. 2020 time:15:45 pm – 16:30 pm CEST

Session 2/1: Digital Economy:  Supporting growth in digital entrepreneurship/ “E-commerce in COVID-19 times: How can a regional e-commerce market help?”

Moderator: Mr. Zdravko Ilić, CEFTA Secretariat
Mr. Dritani Mezini, CEO &founder, key note speaker
Mr. Christoph Ungerer, World Bank Washington
Ms. Zorana Milidrag, president of the e-commerce association Serbia
Mr. Milan Dobrijević, Serbian Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications
Ms. Pranvera Kastrati, RCC
Ms. Tanja Ilijevska, Head of Policies and Financial Instruments Development, Fund for Innovation and Technology Development North Macedonia;
Ms. Linda Shomo, CEO Easypay, AL

E-Commerce has the potential to boost regional trade and significantly contribute to growth, job creation and strengthening of economic competitiveness. During the COVID-19 pandemic, a boost of e-commerce activities worldwide and also in the Western Balkan region can be observed; for example the growth of private individual e-commerce transactions in North Macedonia increased by 99% as compared to March 2019. The participants presented and confronted the views of the business sector, development institutions and policy makers. In particular, they discussed the need for action and on-going initiatives from the private and the public sector in the region with regards to regulation and self-regulation.


* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.