PLDT leads Asian telcos in digital inclusion

MANILA, Philippines, Dec. 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — PLDT, Inc. the Philippines’ largest fully integrated telecommunications company leads digital inclusion among Asian telcos.

In the latest Digital Inclusion Benchmark conducted by the World Benchmarking Alliance (WBA), PLDT ranked 12th out of 150 companies, joining global businesses like Apple, Cisco, Samsung, and Alphabet in the Top 15.

While being the sixth telco following Telefonica, Orange, Telstra, Deutsche Telekom and Telia, PLDT is the top ranked telco from Asia (excluding China) and the highest ranking company headquartered in a developing nation.

"We are proud to be ranked globally with the world’s biggest tech companies in promoting a more inclusive digital economy and society. We are encouraged to see that our efforts have been recognized and this recognition motivates us even more to pursue efforts to connect and empower Filipinos digitally," said Melissa Vergel de Dios, Chief Sustainability Officer of PLDT.

From 100 companies in the first iteration, WBA shortlisted and ranked in the second Digital Inclusion Benchmark 150 most influential technology companies in the world on their efforts across four indicators – enhancing digital skills, fostering trustworthy use, innovating openly and ethically, and improving access to technology.

The WBA favorably noted the PLDT group’s initiatives on skills development where it ranked second among companies surveyed. The Infoteach Program, in partnership with the UP Open University (UPOU), provides nationwide digital literacy training for students. The Digital Farmers Program trains small-scale Filipino farmers on using technology to improve harvest and market crops. The Smart Wireless Engineering Education Program (SWEEP) is the country’s longest-running industry-academe linkage helping to produce industry-ready graduates or technopreneurs. The School-in-a-Bag is a portable digital classroom that brings education to children in far-flung communities. The said programs address narrowing of the digital divide and the inclusion of marginalized sectors.

PLDT also showed strong performance on the "use" category, placing 10th among companies evaluated. The WBA recognized the company’s investments in its cybersecurity defenses. The alliance also noted PLDT’s commitment to keeping a safer online space for its customers, particularly, children where the company has partnered with like-minded organizations to spread awareness on and curtail online abuse and exploitation of minors.

Overall, PLDT is one of only 27 companies that received passing marks in this year’s benchmarking. PLDT remains committed to tearing down the barriers that are currently excluding billions of people globally from accessing and productively harnessing digital technologies.

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