By Mario Andree
Overall computer literacy rate in Sri Lanka improved to 35 per cent during the first six months of 2021 from 32 per cent recorded a year ago as a result of students being required to study online from home due to the pandemic.
According to the Department of Census and Statistics, during the first half of 2021 urban computer literacy stood at 49.8 per cent, up from 43.5 per cent in 2020, while the literacy rate in the rural areas improved to 32.9 per cent from 30.7 per cent a year earlier and computer literacy rate among the Estate population rose to 15.3 per cent from 12.1 per cent.
Males in Sri Lanka had a higher computer literacy rate of 37.2 per cent during the first half of 2021, up from 33.9 per cent in 2020, while women were only 33 per cent, up from 30.4 per cent a year earlier.
On a provincial level, Western Province had a computer literacy rate of 47.1 per cent, Southern Province at 31.7 per cent, Central Province at 31.8 per cent, Northern Province at 29.1 per cent, Eastern Province at 28.9 per cent, North Western at 31 per cent, Sabaragamuwa at 33.9 per cent and North Central at 24.8 per cent and Uva Provice at 26.1 per cent.
The Department found that 42.7 per cent of the population was able to use the internet, while only 17.4 per cent knew to use e-mail facilities.
The percentage distribution of device used to connect to internet and email for desktops reduced to 21 per cent, as Smartphone usage increased to 76.3 per cent.