RESOLUTION GT-PLEN/7 (Antalya, 2006)
Study on the participation of all relevant stakeholders
The Plenipotentiary Conference of the International Telecommunication Union (Antalya, 2006),
a) § 20 of the Geneva Declaration of Principles of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), which states that governments as well as the private sector, civil society and the United Nations and other international organizations have an important role and responsibility in the development of the information society and, as appropriate, in decision-making processes, and that building a people-centred information society is a joint effort which requires cooperation and partnership among all stakeholders;
b) that stakeholders have different roles and responsibilities, as indicated in § 8 of the Tunis Commitment of WSIS;
c) the beneficial participation of all stakeholders, including civil-society entities and organizations, in the meetings of the preparatory committee of WSIS (PrepComs) and their contributions to both phases of WSIS;
d) several paragraphs of the WSIS outcome documents, stressing the importance of the participation of all the stakeholders, including civil-society entities and organizations, in the construction of the information society;
e) Article 2 of the ITU Constitution, which states that ITU is an intergovernmental organization in which Member States and Sector Members, having well-defined rights and obligations, cooperate for the fulfilment of the purposes of the Union, and that it shall give due regard to the principle of universality and the desirability of universal participation in the Union;
f) Article 3 of the ITU Constitution concerning rights and obligations of Member States and Sector Members;
g) Article 19 of the ITU Convention concerning participation of entities and organizations other than administrations in the Union’s activities,
the urgent need to bridge the digital divide and to assist developing countries, including those countries with special needs, as stated in the WSIS outcome documents, to benefit fully from the potential of information and communication technologies (ICTs),
a) that the Council, at its 2006 session, invited the membership to reflect upon how ITU should adapt itself to the information society and the changing telecommunication environment and what amendments may be required to the ITU Constitution and Convention, and to include corresponding proposals in their contributions to this conference;
b) the character of ITU as the specialised agency of the United Nations on telecommunications, and the need to study the impact of the participation of all relevant stakeholders in ITU’s activities related to WSIS, including its financial impact,
the need to promote and enhance the participation of entities and organizations in the activities of the Union and to foster fruitful cooperation and partnership between them and Member States for the fulfilment of the overall objectives embodied in the purposes of the Union, in accordance with No. 3A of the Constitution and other ITU basic texts,
1 to conduct a study on the participation of all relevant stakeholders in the activities of the Union related to WSIS;
2 that all measures regarding the participation of relevant stakeholders in the activities of the Union related to WSIS shall respect the agreed strong development orientation of the United Nations system-wide follow-up of WSIS,
instructs the Council
1 at its extraordinary session, to establish a working group, or to task an existing working group, open to all Member States, with the terms of reference and mandate annexed to this resolution;
2 to review, at each annual session, the progress report of this working group and disseminate, as appropriate, the interim results of the study;
3 to present a final report, well in advance of the next plenipotentiary conference, for the use of Member States in preparing their proposals to that conference;
4 to allocate the necessary funds, within available resources, in order to implement this resolution,
instructs the Secretary-General and the Directors of the Bureaux
to support the working group by providing resources and possible inputs,
invites Member States and Sector Members
to submit written contributions to the working group.
ANNEX TO RESOLUTION GT-PLEN/7
1 The Working Group of the Council tasked with this study shall be open to all Member States, whose delegations may include appropriate legal, technical and regulatory experts.
2 The Working Group should develop and conduct open consultations, also using electronic means, on the inclusion of relevant stakeholders in the activities of ITU related to the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), including additional tasks to be performed by ITU as a result of the WSIS outputs.
3 The Working Group of the Council shall take into account:
a) the need to uphold the intergovernmental character of the Union and the purposes of the Union as set forth in Article 1 of the Constitution of ITU;
b) the important contribution of Sector Members and Associates in the work of ITU;
c) relevant existing practices, if any, within ITU or other specialized agencies of the United Nations and other intergovernmental organizations;
d) the need to conform to the agreed strong development orientation of all WSIS follow-up activities; any criteria and modalities for the participation of relevant WSIS stakeholders shall especially take into account the needs and priorities of developing countries.
4 The terms of reference and mandate for this Working Group shall include, but not be limited to, the following tasks:
a) to establish a set of criteria for defining which stakeholders are relevant to participate in ITU activities related to WSIS, taking into consideration the added value of their participation;
b) to analyse the definitions of Sector Member and Associate and the related provisions of the legal instruments of ITU, and how they could be applied in order to enhance the membership of ITU, and, if required, to identify possible amendments to these provisions;
c) to review the existing mechanisms (e.g. partnerships, symposia, seminars, workshops, focus groups, policy forums, experts) in regards to participation by non-ITU members, and to consider how to use them more effectively, to improve them and to identify possible new ones;
d) to identify specific efforts that may be needed to mobilize and ensure the meaningful and effective participation of all relevant stakeholders from developing countries and stakeholders in the development field, including by providing assistance;
e) to draft any possible amendments to the ITU basic texts that might be needed in order to facilitate the participation of all relevant stakeholders in the activities of ITU related to WSIS;
f) to identify and establish the spheres of competence that the Member States reserve for themselves with regard to WSIS stakeholders and the possible denunciation of their participation in ITU;
g) to consider the financial obligations and consequences of the participation of relevant stakeholders in ITU’s activities related to WSIS according to the options considered.