Disasters disrupt national economies, severely weaken the poor and vulnerable and are recognized as major impediments to sustainable development and reduction of poverty.
ITU’s activities in the area of Emergency Telecommunications make valuable contribution in addressing issues related to disaster management and relief, with a primary focus on Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States.
· ITU’s work in the field of radiocommunications helps mitigate the impact of disasters by timely disseminating authoritative information before, during and after disasters occur, hence facilitating their prediction, alerting and prevention.
· Technical standards and recommendations developed by ITU play a strategic role in ensuring global interconnection and interoperability of telecommunications networks for disaster monitoring and management, whereas they are also instrumental in developing call priority schemes for relief workers and in delivering prompt, uncorrupted warnings to end users.
· Through its development and emergency telecommunications agenda, ITU is directing substantial effort at mainstreaming disaster management in ICT projects and activities as part of disaster preparedness. This includes infrastructure development, and establishment of enabling policy, legal and regulatory frameworks. In the immediate aftermath of disasters, ITU deploys temporary ICT solutions to provide assistance to countries affected by disasters (e.g. basic ICT and telemedicine applications via satellites), and it also helps reconstruct or rehabilitate those countries’ ICT networks while ensuring enhanced resilience of their systems.