Digitalisation opportunities : Peer-to-peer learning event and study tour


Africa RISE, in collaboration with the Economic Development Board (EDB) of Mauritius and its Regional Multidisciplinary Centre of Excellence (RMCE), welcomed a delegation from Madagascar´s Economic Development Board (EDBM) from 28 to 30 June 2023. This three-day study tour and peer-to-peer learning event served as an opportunity to understand the prerequisites for digitalisation from the different projects of Africa RISE as well as to learn from the Mauritian experience on digitalisation of key services.  The trip of the delegation was funded by the European Union (EU) through the Investment Climate Reform Project (PRECI).  This initiative is aligned with the EDB’s Africa Centre of Excellence which aims at harnessing all efforts to cement further institutional and corporate ties within Africa.


Through a strategic partnership supported by Africa RISE, Mauritius EDB and RMCE, the three entities joined forces to establish a robust platform where invaluable insights, best practices, and success strategies were shared with Madagascar’s EDBM.  A peer-to-peer learning event was organised by Africa RISE on the 29th of June.  EDBM Madagascar also met with various stakeholders in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector to learn from existing information and technology (IT) systems.  The stakeholders met included EDB of Mauritius, Centre for Information Technology and Systems, Mauritius Revenue Authority and the Mauritius Digital Promotion Agency to learn from the Mauritian experience.

In recent years, Madagascar’s EDBM entered an era of digitalisation and received support from the European Union (EU) through the Investment Climate Reform Project (PRECI). PRECI was designed to support EDBM´s gradual digitisation of administrative procedures and the strengthening of the institutional capacities, and thus contributing to the business environment and investment climate of Madagascar.


In February 2023, Africa RISE organised a peer-to-peer event on Public-Private Dialogue (PPD) for the benefit of EDB of Madagascar. EDB of Madagascar is already implementing PPD initiatives following the learning from the February Peer-to-Peer learning event organised by Africa RISE.  As such, following that positive experience, EDB of Madagascar reached out to Africa RISE for support to organise a similar Peer-to-Peer learning event.  This new event was to support the learning of good practices towards the improvement of performance and services towards the transition of EDB of Madagascar to the Single Window.   


The Peer-to-Peer learning event was open for participation and included 25 participants from Zambia, Namibia, South Africa, Ghana, Seychelles and Mauritius. The learning session was facilitated by EU Africa RISE’s Manisha Dookhony, Africa RISE Economist & Market Reform Expert. She emphasised that digitalisation encompasses more than just implementing technological solutions. It involves strategic planning, change management, and addressing various challenges that arise during the process. The goal is to achieve digital transformation, not only within organisations, but also at the regional and international levels. This comprehensive approach ensures that digitalisation positively impacts various sectors, including trade, infrastructure, customs, and government policies.” During the session, participants learnt from different examples across the Eastern and Southern African regionNamely : E-commerce Strategy Namibia, Madagascar and Eswatini; Transitioning to a cloud system at EDB of Mauritius; Digitalization framework for Botswana, aiming to support the country in achieving its economic goals; Streamlining digitalisation in Seychelles' Port System; Change Management and Digitalisation in Seychelles and Madagascar; Internal process streamlining- Guichet Unique Madagascar; Training for digitalisation of the Economic intelligence Unit of Rwanda; and Data Protection bill in Namibia.


In his closing remarks, Mr.Tojo Ramamonjisoa, Director of Reforms and Private Sector Development, stated the EDBM began digitalising its one-stop-shop a few years ago to improve the quality of services provided to its users. This was supported by the World Bank (PRODIGY project) and the EU´s PRECI project. EDBM plans to further extend digitalisation to other areas, such as the issuance of work permits, the issuance of Free Zone licenses, among others. To that end, the learning mission will significantly improve EDBM´s capacities to plan and execute upcoming initiatives.