On behalf of the People of the Republic of Vanuatu, I wish to extend our sincere and heartfelt welcome to all attending the ITU Global Symposium for Regulators (GSR-19) in our beautiful capital of Port Vila from 9 to 12 July.
This is also the first times that the Pacific region is hosting the GSR and I would like to thank ITU for accepting our invitation to host the conference.
The Republic of Vanuatu is quickly becoming a regional leader in the ICT sector, thanks to ambitious initiatives being implemented to boost connectivity and establish an expansive communications infrastructure.
I am pleased to highlight some of these initiatives.
To meet the consumer’s critical need to be empowered and protected, the Government of Vanuatu has approved telecommunications and consumer protection regulations to be implemented by the Telecommunications, Radiocommunications and Broadcasting Regulator (TRBR). In addition to these regulations, TRBR has initiated the “Community Consumer Champion” project to raise awareness among consumers and users of telecommunication/ICT products and services.
Vanuatu’s unique and exciting Universal Access Policy “Pay or Play” approach has proved to be a successful and effective model for the expansion of telecommunication services to underserved and unserved areas of the country. Thanks to this policy, the majority of the population is covered by 3G networks and enjoy improved voice and broadband coverage.
GSR-19 offers Vanuatu and indeed other countries in the Pacific a unique opportunity to have a dialogue and exchange ideas on the future of the ICT policy and regulatory environment…
In recognition of Vanuatu’s outstanding leadership and initiatives in telecommunications/ICT development, ITU awarded Vanuatu with the prestigious “ICT in Sustainable Development Award” in 2015. This marks the biggest achievement so far received and recognized at the ITU level.
Since 2011, Vanuatu has been actively involved in the ITU Global Symposium for Regulators (GSR) – participating in its discussion sessions, and more importantly, contributing to the development of its internationally recognized regulatory Best Practice Guidelines.
The theme of this year’s Global Symposium for Regulators, “Inclusive Connectivity: The future of regulation”, is close to us in the Pacific region. GSR-19 offers Vanuatu and indeed other countries in the Pacific a unique opportunity to have a dialogue and exchange ideas on the future of the ICT policy and regulatory environment, with a view to leverage the vast opportunities offered by ICTs to digitally transform our economies.
I wish you all fruitful deliberations.