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Electronic Commerce for Transition Economies in the Digital Age

19 - 20 June 2000

Background document Presentations (download all [zip]
[doc] Session 1 Session 2 Session 3 Session 4 Session 5 Session 6 Session7


New information and communications technologies are transforming the economic landscape bringing unparalleled opportunity and change. The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN/ECE) is committed to ensuring that the transition economies of central and eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) will be able to exploit the immense potential of the Information Age.

On 19 and 20 June 2000, the UN/ECE held a two-day Forum on Electronic Commerce for Transition Economies in the Digital Age immediately prior to the annual session of its Committee for Trade, Industry and Enterprise Development.

Speakers included high-ranking officials from UN/ECE member States and key players in the industry both at the global and regional level.


Promote the development of the Internet and electronic commerce in transition economies.
Review the Internet infrastructure and prospects for electronic commerce in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the CIS.
Consider the potential of electronic commerce for small and medium-sized enterprises.
Identify the needs for capacity building.

The Forum explored the central issues in electronic commerce and Internet-based enterprise development in transition economies. The discussions had not only raised awareness of the current situation but also provide a vision of the vast potential and upcoming opportunities for these countries.


During the two-day event you would have met:

key decision-makers and officials from all over the region; people who will provide the framework by fostering infrastructure developments and improving business conditions;
international business leaders with years of experience; the major players in electronic commerce who will set the pace for the future;
high-ranking representatives from international organizations and the European Union who assist transition economies and help them confront the new challenges. 

You would have been able to discuss on an equal footing with experts from all over the world these exciting market opportunities, get acquainted with the latest technological or regulatory developments and gain insider knowledge from experts in the field.

The Forum has answered such practical questions as:

What is the realistic potential and time-scale of these new prospects and what can transition economies do to be included in this progress?
What can Governments in the region do to stimulate electronic commerce, to encourage start-up ventures, assist the emergence of profitable business operations and create long-term employment opportunities?

The meeting was sponsored by Microsoft Europe GmbH and Lucent Technologies E.C.S. Ltd.