Close the Digital Divides: the Digital Response to COVID-19

Estonia and Singapore are co-sponsoring a Global Declaration on the Digital Response to COVID-19, “Close the Digital Divides: the Digital Response to COVID-19”. This declaration will be launched at a videoconference at the level of Foreign Ministers, at 8.00am (New York time, EDT)/3.00pm Estonian time/8.00pm Singapore time on Wednesday, 1 July 2020.

The COVID-19 crisis is the greatest global challenge since the Second World War. While many of us have endured unimaginable hardship during the crisis, it is still possible to turn this challenge into an opportunity to build stronger societies that can withstand devastating social, economic and political emergencies. This can be done by using innovative digital solutions.

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The aim of this Ministerial Conference is to provide an opportunity to discuss how countries can emerge stronger and better equipped from the COVID-19 crisis by using innovative and flexible digital solutions, and working together as a global family. Countries can share the lessons learned from our response to this unprecedented crisis, and highlight their outlook for our future, particularly as we face challenges to multilateralism and in view of the 75th anniversary of the United Nations.

We invite countries to also co-sponsor and declare support for the Global Declaration on the Digital Response to COVID-19 at this virtual meeting.



The creation of the internet led to a revolution. Similarly, the digital transformation of societies, which has sped up as a result of the current COVID-19 crisis, could bring about a global breakthrough. Digital transformation should be addressed in a holistic manner, encompassing all aspects of society. This crisis has underlined once more that digital transformation is crucial for strengthening the resilience of societies. At the same time, accelerated digitalisation could lead to widening digital divides. This has to be avoided, and no one should be left behind. We need strong political will, vision and a systematic approach to realise the potential of digitalisation.


The Ministerial Conference will take place at 8.00am on Wednesday, 1 July 2020 (New York time) via videoconference.

The proceedings will be moderated by Co-Founder and Programme Director of Smart Governance, Estonian e-Governance Academy, Linnar Viik.

The participating Ministers will be invited to make interventions of no longer than three minutes. The briefers are invited to speak up to 10 minutes each.


  • Amina J. Mohammed, Deputy Secretary General, UN


  • Doreen Bogdan-Martin, Director of the Telecommunication Development Bureau, ITU
  • Lacina Koné, Director General, Smart Africa


Additional infomation