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  • General information
  • Objective
  • Format
  • Speakers
  • Insights from IDR 2020
  • What: Side event for the Conference of African Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development: “Africa’s sustainable industrialization and diversification in the digital era in the context of COVID-19"

    When: 21 March 2021 at 2:00 PM (CET)

    Where: Virtually

    Registration: Please sign up here.  All registered participants will automatically receive a Zoom link in a timely manner.

  • The emergence and diffusion of advanced digital production (ADP) technologies of the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) are radically altering manufacturing production, increasingly blurring the boundaries between physical and digital production systems. Advances in robotics, artificial intelligence, additive manufacturing, and data analytics generate significant opportunities to accelerate innovation and increase the value-added content of production in manufacturing industries (UNIDO, 2019).

    In this side event, UNIDO will present the key aspects of ‘Industrializing in the digital age’ based on the Industrial Development Report (IDR) 2020’s main findings and messages, which are expected to bring new insights on how advanced digital production technologies are re-shaping the process of industrial development. It also provides an opportunity to discuss and elaborate on the challenges and opportunities that the COVID-19 pandemic presents to African countries for the adoption of advanced digital technologies and their future course of industrialization.

  • This side event is composed of two parts. During the first part, a senior representative from UNIDO and the hosting organizations will welcome the audience and provide brief opening remarks. Next, a presentation by UNIDO staff in charge of drafting the report will present the key aspects of ‘industrializing in the digital age’ based on the key findings and insights from the IDR 2020.

    During the second part of the event, a panel of experts will be invited to make their observations and provide comments on the topic of ‘industrializing in the digital age’ with emphasis on the key findings of IDR 2020 as well as its context in a post-pandemic world. After the members of the panel have spoken the moderator will invite the audience to pose their questions or make remarks.

    The moderator will then invite the panelists to respond to the questions collected from the floor (virtual). Participation from the audience (in the virtual chat room) will be encouraged to make the event as interactive as possible.

  • Opening remark:

    • LI Yong, UNIDO Director General


    • Ahmed Kamaly, Deputy Minister of Planning and Economic Development in Egypt
    • Célestin Monga, Professor, Harvard University
    • Kunal Sen, Director, United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research
    • Phyllis Wakiaga, CEO, Kenya Association of Manufacturers