South Korea Hosts ITU Telecom World 2017 Conference

By Alyssa Futa
Staff Writer
This week, The Republic of Korea’s Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning (MSIP) are hosting the ITU Telecom World 2017 Conference.
According the conference’s site, the ITU Telecom World Conference, held in Busan Exhibition and Conference Center in Busan, South Korea on September 25-28, 2017, “is an annual ICT [Information and Communications Technology] event [organized] by ITU Telecom part of the International Telecommunication Union [ITU], the UN agency responsible for ICT-related issues.” The conference’s status as a UN agency gives the ITU a unique platform to bring together governments, entrepreneurs, start-ups, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs), and innovators.
This year’s theme is “Digital transformation, global opportunity,” reports CitiesToday. Groups and individuals hope to address the following key topics: “Al, 5G, banking, smart cities, sustainable development, and building inclusive innovation ecosystems,” the Korean Herald states.
Beginning in 1971, this year’s conference will serve as a follow up to the 2014 meeting in Busan to “discuss ICT issues, including internet governance, at the ITU’s Plenipotentiary Conference, a meeting aimed at setting and revising the UN agency’s general policies”, reports the Korean Herald.
A large gathering of some of the brightest minds in the ICT community allows insightful grounds for sharing ideas about technology, technology policy, and ways that individuals and groups can most effectively utilize technology. ITU Telecom has invited speakers from numerous countries such as China, South Africa, and Colombia that are involved in the ICT industry. These speakers as well as other members of the ICT and SMEs community gives companies and the government opportunities to network and discuss issues that affect ICT as a whole.
ITU Telecom has given governments the opportunities to help their countries in the area of technology. For example, Ghana has made extensive plans for the conference. Joy Online reports that their goal is to “increase Ghana’s brand awareness on the global stage and highlight investment and partnership opportunities available in Ghana’s ICT sector” and “facilitate new partnership deals between Ghanian exhibitors and those from other countries”.
Team Ghana consists of Deputy Communications Minister, Nenyi George Kojo Andah, and members of the public and private sectors within the country. They are hoping to build relationships with the ICT communities and promote Ghana’s eTransform Project. According to Joy Online, the project “aims at digitalizing all systems within state institutions, and all transactions between the state and the public” as well as improving accessibility to technology in rural areas of Ghana.
The Republic of Korea, ITU’s host country, has also benefitted from conference’s presence. The Korea Herald reports that the conference will generate about $104 million and create 1,071 jobs in the Busan area.
The ITU Telecom World Conference provided an incredible opportunity for members of the international ICT community to come together and discuss effective ways to utilize technology. The conference will provide an opportunity for members of the ICT community to solve issues, provide extensive collaboration, and network to help the progress of the ICT industry.

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