E-commerce can become a driver of growth across South Asia: World Bank report
Dec 16, 2019
New Delhi, Dec 16 (ANI): E-commerce can become a driver of growth across South Asia and boost trade between the region’s countries, but its potential remains largely untapped, says a new World Bank report released on December 16. The report titled ‘Unleashing E-Commerce for South Asian Integration’ notes that although e-commerce has grown significantly in South Asia, online sales accounted for a mere 1.6 and 0.7 percent of total retail sales in India and Bangladesh, compared to 15 percent in China and around 14 percent globally. Increasing the use of e-commerce by consumers and firms in South Asia could potentially help increase competition and firm productivity, and encourage diversification of production and exports, the report added. A survey of over 2,200 firms in South Asia showed that the top concerns on cross-border e-commerce sales included e-commerce related logistics, e-commerce and digital regulations, and connectivity and information technology infrastructure. These barriers are significantly higher when trading with other South Asian countries. The main international e-partners of firms in South Asia are China, the United Kingdom, and the United States, and not other South Asian countries.