|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
GLOBAL ALLIANCE FOR information and communication technologies
AND DEVELOPMENT LAUNCHES ARAB REGIONAL NETWORK
The United Nations will launch a network of information and communications technology (ICT) specialists from Arab countries on 18 June in Damascus, Syria, to help the region use information and communications technology to implement international development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals.
The regional network will be the Arabic focal point for the Global Alliance for ICT and Development (GAID) of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs. It will provide regional stakeholders, including Governments, international organizations, businesses, non-governmental organizations and academia with a permanent platform to exchange ideas on strategies, plans and experiences to advance the Millennium Development Goals and the outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society.
“Turning commitments into results demands a truly multi-stakeholder effort, involving not only national Governments and intergovernmental organizations but also regional and local governments, the private sector, civil society, media, academia and the general public,” says Sarbuland Khan, Executive Coordinator of GAID. “Collaboration among all stakeholders at all levels, from policy through implementation, will be necessary to successfully realize our common goals.”
A Steering Group for the Regional Arab Network will be established at the launch to coordinate activities and encourage regular exchanges between members. The launch will follow a three-day meeting of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), which was convened as a follow-up to the outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society. The gathering will consider the Regional Plan of Action for building the Information Society in Western Asia, the Arab information and communications technology strategy and other national strategies and plans of action.
Participants will discuss a progress report highlighting implementation activities related to the World Summit outcomes, the Regional Plan of Action and the Arab information and communications technology strategy. They are expected to update the regional action plan by agreeing on a list of new projects targeting the needs and realities of the Information Society for the period from 2009 to 2015. The meeting is also to decide on a road map for the implementation of and follow-up to future World Summit-related activities.
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