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October 19, 2017

Key issues shaping ICT development at WTDC-17: Oscar M Gonzalez (VIDEO)

By ITU News

At the World Telecommunication Development Conference (WTDC-17) in Buenos Aires, ITU interviewed the Chair of WTDC-17, Oscar M Gonzalez, from Argentina’s Ministry of Communications about the key issues being deliberated and their impact on ICT development.

“[There are] two main issues that are common denominators in this conference. First of all, is the issue of connectivity, broadband connectivity… and to include all of those who are not included today and that’s one of the main focus [areas] of our debates at the conference,” said Gonzalez.

And the second pillar of WTDC-17, said Gonzalez, focuses on “bringing the benefits of digital economy, the use of technology, to have new forms of production that are more efficient and create more wealth for our society.”

“We are working on two or three main documents that this conference has to produce. That’s our main objective. One is the [Buenos Aires Declaration], a high-level statement on how ICT is useful and will help the world to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). And we are working on a strategic plan and action plan for the development sector of ITU.”

The lively and informed debates have identified several key actions and common challenges facing developing countries in regard to their ICT development, said Gonzalez.

“In Argentina, as in most other developing countries, we also have the issue of connectivity, and we are working at the national level and also in this conference to achieve full connectivity.” But Gonzalez warned that connectivity itself is not enough on its own.

“It’s important not only to be connected but also to have good quality in those connections so people can embrace and achieve benefits… that the digital economy presents to all of us.” — Oscar M Gonzalez

Finally, on what actions he would like to see coming out WTDC-17, he discussed the use of ICT to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

He described the objectives of sustainable development and ICTs as “a two way street.”

For him, “it’s not only what ICT can do for sustainable development, but also the objectives and the focus that the UN has put on the objectives of sustainable development. It also allows us to work on ICT policy regulation with a special or a different perspective.”

For more insights watch the full video here:

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