Microsoft has partnered with Liquid Intelligent Technologies to expand internet access to an additional 20 million people in Africa by 2025.
Through this collaboration, Microsoft’s Airband Initiative, which aims to provide high-speed internet to people who lack it, will be extended to reach unserved and underserved areas, including LDCs such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zambia.
The tech giant is also partnering with the International Organization of Employers and Synapse to train 20,000 youth, women, and entrepreneurs in digital, business, and employability skills in four LDCs. Additionally, Microsoft is focusing on growing the cybersecurity talent pool, particularly in Africa, as access to the internet expands and the digital ecosystem grows.
In another partnership, Microsoft is working with OCP Africa to scale its Digital Agriculture Platform across Africa, which provides fertilizer solutions customized to local conditions and crop needs. The goal is to support 40 million farmers and agri-stakeholders in Africa by 2030.
These initiatives come ahead of the United Nations LDC5 Private Sector Forum, which will explore ways to use digital development to accelerate sustainable development for LDCs.
Microsoft’s efforts aim to address the social, economic, and environmental challenges facing LDCs, which account for 13% of the world’s population but only 1.5% of global GDP and less than 1% of global trade. By expanding digital infrastructure, digital skilling, and digital development, the tech giant hopes to make progress on the UN’s goal of accelerating sustainable development in LDCs, demonstrating the company’s ongoing commitment to the UN’s mission.