New Report by ECLAC Analyzes the Key Role of Digital Technologies in the COVID-19 Pandemic

The organization’s Executive Secretary, Alicia Bárcena, will present the document at a virtual press conference on Wednesday, August 26, from the institution’s central headquarters in Santiago, Chile.

The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) will present on Wednesday, August 26 its Special Report COVID-19 No. 7, in which it examines the key role of digital technologies in the pandemic prompted by the coronavirus and how gaps in access, affordability and network speed deepen the inequalities and vulnerabilities of the region’s population.

The new document, entitled Universalizing access to digital technologies to address the consequences of COVID-19, analyzes the advances and limitations of digitalization and assesses how digital solutions reduce the impact of measures aimed at containing the virus, such as lockdowns and social distancing. It also proposes measures in the area of connectivity and the digital economy for an inclusive reactivation.

The report will be unveiled during a virtual press conference held by Alicia Bárcena, ECLAC’s Executive Secretary, speaking from Santiago, Chile at 11:00 a.m. local time (UTC/GMT -4:00).

It will be transmitted live via Webex at the following link:

Journalists interested in participating must register in advance. They will receive an automated email reply with instructions for connecting to the event.

The press conference will also be transmitted online via the institution’s website and its social media accounts on Twitter (@cepal_onu) and Facebook ( Journalists will be able to submit their questions ahead of time to the email address [email protected], and ECLAC’s Executive Secretary will respond to them once she has finished presenting the document. Questions will only be taken until 11:30 a.m. local time.

According to the report, digital technologies have been essential for keeping the economy and society functioning during the COVID-19 crisis. Communications networks and infrastructure are getting ever more intensive use for production, education, health, personal relations and entertainment-related activities. Advances that were forecast to take years to come about have occurred in a matter of months. Updated figures on access to Internet in households and the use of technology for telecommuting, electronic health services, online education and electronic commerce, among other areas, will be part of the information that ECLAC’s Executive Secretary, Alicia Bárcena, will unveil.

Members of the media are invited to participate in the virtual press conference. Journalists must connect via the Webex system (prior registration is required) as of 11:00 a.m. local time (UTC/GMT -4:00). Accredited journalists will be able to send their questions in writing via the Webex platform’s chat while the event is taking place. They can also send their queries to the email address [email protected]. Questions will only be taken until 11:30 a.m. local time on Wednesday, August 26.

The presentation will also be transmitted on ECLAC’s website and at
The full electronic version of this new document by ECLAC, along with a press release and the presentation by Executive Secretary Alicia Bárcena, will be available on ECLAC’s website and on the webpage of the COVID-19 Observatory in Latin America and the Caribbean on Wednesday, August 26, as soon as the press conference has concluded.

What: Launch of ECLAC’s Special Report COVID-19 No. 7: Universalizing access to digital technologies to address the consequences of COVID-19

Who: Alicia Bárcena, ECLAC’s Executive Secretary.

When: Wednesday, August 26, 2020, 11:00 a.m. local time in Chile (GMT -04:00).

Where: Virtual connection via the Webex platform (prior registration required).

Event number: 160 898 4914
Event password: TEC2020

Also via ECLAC’s website and at

For queries and to arrange interviews, contact ECLAC’s Public Information Unit.

Email: [email protected]; Telephone: (56) 22210 2040.