Brunei’s Agronect, an app providing access to education and immersive training experiences for farmers and agri-food entrepreneurs, won this year’s APEC Digital Prosperity Award, the APEC Secretariat said on Thursday.
The annual prize was announced at the APEC Ministerial Meeting in Bangkok on Thursday. It was co-chaired by Thailand’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Don Pramudwinai and Thailand’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce Jurin Laksanawit.
“The APEC Digital Prosperity Award serves as a practical platform to take forward the work of APEC in advancing digitalisation and spurring innovation to increase productivity, open up more opportunities and improve the livelihoods of people across APEC,” Don Pramudwinai said during the announcement.
This year, the special award was centred around sustainability. With Thailand championing the Bio-Circular-Green economy concept, the theme focussed on promoting sustainable growth among small and micro-agricultural farms as well as potential entrepreneurs of sustainable agri-food businesses in the region.
Developed by Sarinah Ziziumiza and Nursheila Ziziumiza of Brunei Darussalam, Agronect enables farmers and agri-food entrepreneurs access to production techniques through immersive and interactive virtual reality training experiences, shared knowledge on green practices, and connections to new market opportunities.
The app was selected from among other apps developed by 14 software developer teams participating in the 2022 APEC App Challenge held on the margins of the APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade in May.
“Our main goal is to empower people to learn sustainable techniques that help them grow their businesses, and, using virtual reality and augmented reality, make it that much easier and lower the cost,” Sarinah said. “To grow the agri-food sector more sustainably, we need to attract more talents and provide the necessary skills so that the future of food in the region can be secured.”