Ladies and Gentlemen,
In an increasingly interconnected world, accessibility and inclusiveness must be
our watchwords in building tomorrow’s equitable Knowledge Societies.
As the UN agency charged with development of the world’s information and
communication technologies, ITU places great store in brokering global consensus
on the platforms and technologies that ensure access through seamless global
At the same time, through development initiatives and strategic partnerships
with governments, leading ICT developers and service providers, we strive to
build local capacity and bring affordable ICT services to people the world over.
The cooperation between UPU and ITU has existed for many years. ITU
Standardization Sector established in 1984 a Resolution concerning the
cooperation with UPU for technical study on services of common interests. The
ITU Telecom Development Sector has cooperated with UPU on several projects in
the past years.
Building on that, in 2005 UPU became one of the founding members of our Connect
the World initiative, launching its International Financial System
money-transfer service to millions of remittance workers.
Last year, our organizations decided to further strengthen our cooperation by
signing an MoU aimed at developing and improving ICT-based services in post
offices. Projects are now underway in Afghanistan, Lesotho, Nepal and South
Africa. In Bhutan, we successfully joined forces with local PTTs and the Indian
Government to bring post offices online. This project is not only providing
low-cost access to ICTs in remote rural areas, it is also stimulating local
Through these efforts, our organizations are helping developing countries
leverage the power of ICT access at a grassroots level. But true inclusiveness
encompasses more than ensuring developing countries enjoy the same kinds of
advanced ICTs that are driving economic growth in the industrialized world. This
year’s World Telecommunication and Information Society Day, celebrated on the
17th of May, emphasized the importance of making ICTs accessible to persons with
disabilities, through a focus on the Universal Design Principles that are
already enshrined in a great many ITU technical Recommendations.
I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you a very fruitful and successful