BUENOS AIRES – The World Telecommunication Development Conference (WIDC-17) began on Monday in Buenos Aires under the auspices of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and with a program debating “how to connect all communities” and the values of digitized intelligent government.
Houlin Zhao, secretary general of the ITU, a United Nations agency, noted the importance of putting different communities in contact with each other in his opening address.
To do that, he said “the ITU will help Latin American countries develop new technologies because there are many people with incredible ideas who could complement the existing power of information and communication technology (ICT).”
The theme of the conference, “ICT for Sustainable Development Goals,” is very timely “because now more than ever, we need ICTs to drive development and accelerate the achievement of the SDGs’ vision to leave no one behind,” Zhao said.
ICT experts and government representatives will play key roles in the conference that goes on until Oct. 20.
Representing the host country, Argentine Cabinet chief Marcos Peña attended the inauguration and said that to have “a better world is to have a connected world,” and that “additional inclusion and more access and more communication for all will lead to freedom, more democracy, and more transparency.”
Argentina’s Modernization Minister Andres Ibarra seconded Peña and noted that in his country “7 million homes exist with Internet access” and the immediate goal of his government is to improve connection speed for half of them and provide access for 2 million more.
As for government matters, one of the vital topics of the conference that will continue until Oct. 20 has to do with digitized government – intelligent government – making use of advanced telecom development.
On that subject, the ITU understands that to debate intelligent government it is necessary to evaluate what administrations are doing about innovation, the new technologies being developed and the possible creation of public employment that such progress can make a reality.