Countries from across the African continent will join together to address the overarching theme of bridging the digital divide at ITU Telecom World 2009 taking place in Geneva in October.
Pavilions representing Burundi, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and the Africa Lusophone countries will unite a broad range of organisations from the non-profit, private and R&D sectors with the common goal of reasserting their commitment to ICT and digital development.
In Abuja, Nigeria, ITU secretary-general Dr Hamadoun Touré joined with pan-regional industry stakeholders at the African Telecom Development Summit 2009 to discuss how to sustain the gains of telecom development in Africa over the past 10 years.
“It has been an extraordinary decade for Africa,” says Dr Touré. “Just 10 years ago, virtually nobody in Africa had a mobile phone; today mobile cellular subscription teledensity has reached 32,6%, and more than 30-million people in sub-Saharan Africa access the Internet. What is needed now is a major push forward in broadband access.”
ITU Telecom World 2009 will be a major milestone in addressing the issue of broadband access, and is seen as an important industry event for the developing world, providing an opportunity to benchmark local ICT sectors in terms of policy, regulation, and infrastructure development.
It also enables the showcasing of local ICT, and represents an invaluable opportunity to attract inward investment and seek opportunities to engage with ICT companies from the developed world.