Digital divide must not lead to social exclusion – Lithuanian president

  • 2023-10-30
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS - It is important to ensure that the digital divide does not become a cause of social exclusion, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda said on Monday as he met with Doreen Bogdan-Martin, secretary general of the International Telecommunication Union, in Vilnius.

"We are doing a lot in our country to reduce social exclusion. In these times of technological development, it is important to ensure that the digital divide does not become a cause of increasing social exclusion. I am pleased that today we are launching an initiative to improve the digital skills of the elderly," the president said at the meeting.

The president briefed the ITU secretary general on Lithuania's contribution to the preparation of a report on the losses caused to the telecommunications sector by the Russian aggression against Ukraine, as well as on the ongoing radio broadcasts via medium waves to Ukraine's temporarily territories temporarily.

The president also informed the secretary general about regional specifics that could have a negative impact on the development of 5G networks in the country, noting that Kaliningrad, located in the middle of the European Union and NATO, could hinder efforts to harmonize the use of radio frequencies for the provision of mobile communications not only Lithuania, but also in the whole of Europe, according to the statement released by the presidential press service.

The ITU has a key role to play as it sets the rules for neighboring countries to harmonize and use radio frequencies for both civil and defense purposes, Nauseda said.

In Vilnius, the ITU secretary general is also attending a conference on digitalization were a project aimed at reducing the digital divide among seniors will be presented.