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Doors close on successful ITU TELECOM AFRICA 2008

Windows open on AMERICAS 2010

Cairo, 15 May 2008 - Dr Hamadoun Touré, Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union announced today that the Government of Argentina will hold ITU TELECOM AMERICAS 2010 in Buenos Aires. This will be the 6th event comprising the internationally renowned Forum and Exhibition for the Americas region.

"The Argentine Republic appreciates being able to continue working with ITU, and particularly the opportunity to organize ITU TELECOM AMERICAS 2010, for the first time in our country in a year that we are celebrating the 200 year anniversary since the May Revolution," said Mr Luis Enrique Cappagli, Ambassador of Argentina in Egypt. "Our country is in full expansion, with high levels of economic growth and telecommunications development. It will be a pleasure to receive participants from the Americas and other regions of the world to share professional experiences with the beautiful backdrop of the Argentine Republic." He added that ITU TELECOM AMERICAS 2010, announced symbolically after the ceremony of the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day marking ITU's 143rd anniversary, would be held in conjunction with the bicentennial celebrations of Argentina's independence. Mr Carlos Lisandro Salas, Secretary of Communications of Argentina confirmed that the region offers a diverse range of business opportunities and tremendous scope for expanding telecommunication and ICT services at all levels.

"ITU is very pleased to be staging ITU TELECOM in Argentina in 2010. The region's ICT sector has witnessed significant growth in the past five years and this is an ideal time to be facilitating further partnerships and promoting new advancements for the industry and its global agenda," added Dr Touré.

A number of countries in the region expressed interest in hosting the AMERICAS 2010 event, including Argentina, Brazil, Mexico and Venezuela. A series of consultations and negotiations were undertaken, with particular consideration given to infrastructure, accommodation, transport, and conference and exhibition facilities. Given the excellent offer received by Argentina, and on the advice of the ITU TELECOM Board of Directors, Dr Touré enthusiastically accepted the offer of the Government of Argentina to host the event.

ITU TELECOM AMERICAS 2010 will be held 1-4 March at La Rural Predio Ferial de Buenos Aires, the city's international conference and fair grounds. A Press and VIP day on 28 February will precede the public opening. The venue is ideally located in the heart of this beautiful city and offers all the cutting edge technology and supportive services required of ITU TELECOM events. With its 130 year commitment to showcasing the best of Argentina, La Rural's pavilions, convention halls and main auditorium cover 45,000 square metres indoor space and offer a further 10,000 square metres outdoor and green space.

The previous ITU TELECOM event for the Americas region was hosted by the Government of the Federative Republic of Brazil. ITU TELECOM AMERICAS 2005 was held 3-6 October at the Bahia Convention Centre in Salvador da Bahia, Brazil.

VVIP and VIP presence at AFRICA 2008

The announcement on AMERICAS 2010 was made on the heels of ITU TELECOM AFRICA 2008 which closed its doors after a special ceremony celebrating the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2008 in the presence of Mrs Suzanne Mubarak, Egypt's First Lady. The event was formally opened 10 May by H.E. President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt.

ITU TELECOM AFRICA attracted Ministerial delegations, high-level government officials, regulators, and private sector executives among the full reach of ICT stakeholders. There was special focus on bringing together Ministers and CEOs for key discussions and negotiations. Exclusive Power Lunches focused discussion around Broadband for Africa and Standardization. "I'm very pleased with the amount of key contacts we were able to facilitate," stated Dr. Touré. "This is the type of activity that our participants are seeking and requesting of us. In every way and at all levels, ITU is committed to connecting the world."

Prestigious participation was also seen on the speaker's podium. The Forum held over 30 sessions with 199 speakers from some 45 countries and 6 international organizations. Plenary sessions explored the tremendous ICT opportunities in the region, as well as challenges for both present and future, including regulatory and policy issues. Leading visionaries and ICT experts speaking in the Forum included Mr Yousuf Al Sayed, CEO Thuraya Telecommunications Company; Dr Cheick Diarra, Chairman for Africa and Middle East, Microsoft; Dr Ahmed Mostafa El-Sherbini, Director National Telecommunication Institute, Egypt; Mr Chris Gabriel, Chief Executive Officer Zain / Celtel; Dr Khaled E. Ismail, Chief Executive Officer SysDSoft; Mr David McGlade, CEO INTELSAT; Mr Vincenzo Nesci, President Middle-East and Africa Alcatel-Lucent; Mr Mohammad Hassan Omran, Chairman, ETISALAT; Dr Mohamed Reda, Chief Executive Officer Allied Soft Egypt; Mr Marc Rennard, Executive vice President International Africa Middle East & Asia, France Telecom; Mr Donglin Shen, Vice President ZTE Corp.

The exhibition showfloor also attracted an impressive array of participants. With stands as high as three-stories, the four sold-out halls hailed exhibitors from almost 40 countries. Alcatel-Lucent, Alkan CIT, Arabsat, Ericsson, ERTU, Etisalat, Huawei Technologies, KT, Nokia Siemens Networks, Qualcomm, Telecom Egypt, Telsol, Vodafone and ZTE were some of the companies represented. China, Egypt, Korea, and Nigeria had National pavilions and TD-SCDMA hosted an industry Pavilion. For the first time, Youth Forum Alumni also showcased achievements in their own Pavilion. In terms of regional distribution, African representation accounted for almost 60 per cent of stands. Asia and Europe were also significantly represented with 23 per cent and 12 per cent respectively, as well as smaller focus from the Americas and other regions. "Though always focused on the region, ITU TELECOM regional events are becoming more and more global," commented Mr Fernando Lagraña, Executive Manager of ITU TELECOM. "This year's event was very international in both level and scope."

ICT Leaders of the Future Convene for Youth Forum

79 young people from 45 countries across the African region came together at ITU TELECOM AFRICA 2008 for the Youth Forum. Widely acknowledged as the region's ICT leaders of the future, the Youth Fellows engaged in talks, debates and interactive panel discussions with a full range of ICT stakeholders. Speakers addressed this vibrant group of youth seeking to advance an ICT agenda by promoting youth rights in communicating and using ICT, the role of youth in promoting cybersecurity, and generally empowering youth to improve quality of life through ICT.

The Youth Fellows worked together during AFRICA 2008 to produce a declaration and action plan, which they released for consideration by member states, ITU and the ICT industry at large. The declaration will be available from ITU's website.

What lies ahead for ITU TELECOM...

The next stop on ITU TELECOM's calendar of events is Bangkok, Thailand. From 2-5 September, ITU TELECOM ASIA 2008 will welcome Heads of State and Government from around the Asia-Pacific region and around the world along with leaders from the private sector and other stakeholders to address key issues emerging in New Generations, New Values — the theme for ASIA 2008.

Following the ASIA regional event, ITU TELECOM continues its tour onward to Geneva, Switzerland. ITU TELECOM WORLD 2009, the organization's flagship event, takes place 5-9 October 2009.

ITU TELECOM events were launched more than 37 years ago, with World TELECOM being held first in Geneva in 1971. The regional events were introduced in 1985 to address more specific concerns of the individual regions. Since then these events have grown in size and prestige and have become the most respective and authoritative in the world.

Key Statistics from ITU TELECOM AFRICA 2008

Exhibitors 191 Exhibitors from 37 countries, including 6 Pavilions.
Exhibition space, net 8254 m2.
VIPs 308 from 92 countries, including Ministers, Regulators and Director Generals, and 120 Company CEOs
Total Forum participants, including speakers
(not including VIPs and Press)
747 from including 79 Youth Forum Fellows
Accredited media 436 from 24 countries, including 46 technical crew
Total participants at the event 6706

For more information, please see www.itu.int/AFRICA2008/ or contact:

Sanjay Acharya
Chief, Media Relations and Public Information
ITU
Tel: +41 22 730 6135 (Geneva)
Mobile: +41 79 249 4861
e-Mail
Fernando Lagraña
Executive Manager,
ITU TELECOM
Tel: +41 22 730 50947
e-Mail

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Updated : 2008-05-15