Opening remarks: 7th meeting of the FG IPTV
Qawra, St Paul's Bay, Malta
11 December 2007
Ladies and Gentlemen
It’s an honour and a pleasure for me to be able to open this – seventh and
final – meeting of the IPTV Focus Group today.
On behalf of ITU I would like to thank the Government of Malta for hosting
this important meeting at this beautiful location, and H.E. Mr. Censu Galea
for taking time out of his busy schedule to come here to welcome us. Malta,
despite being a small country, has always made a significant contribution to
ITU, even hosting the World telecommunication Development Conference in
1998, and we appreciate it very much.
Twenty months ago my predecessor Houlin Zhao convened a public meeting to
discover what the market need for IPTV standards was. The answer was
unequivocally that ITU should take the lead on coordinating and developing
global standards to enable rapid progress in order to avoid market
fragmentation. He made the decision to quickly establish this Focus Group.
The completion of 21 deliverables in 20 months is an impressive feat given
the breadth of the work and the number of requirements captured. The
achievement is testament to your hard work… and patience.
The focus of much of ITU-T’s ongoing standards-making activities on Next
Generation Networks is essential to meet the needs of the information driven
society. And, in the context of NGN we see the attractive promise of IPTV to
generate multiple revenue streams over the same core network. Indeed IPTV is
one of the most highly visible applications to emerge as part of work on the
NGN. It can be seen as both the business case and principal driver for
accelerating deployment of NGN.
The stage of work that sees completion this week lays the groundwork for an
area of ICTs that some predict could attract up to 100 million subscribers
in the next three years. It’s easy to see why so many of the world’s key ICT
companies have been keen to progress this work in ITU.
ITU’s next phase of IPTV work – to be called the IPTV-GSI (for global
standards initiative) - will focus on speedy preparation of ITU-T
Recommendations based on the output of the Focus Group as well as the
detailed protocols necessary. I have every confidence that this work will
progress smoothly thanks to the results of this group. We will issue a press
release following the meeting to announce to the world the success of the
Focus Group and the beginning of this new phase of work.
This Focus Group has profited enormously from collaboration with all ITU-T
Study Groups and other forums and regional standards bodies including ATIS
IPTV Interoperability Forum (IIF), DSL Forum, the DVB project, ETSI TISPAN
and the Home Gateway Initiative (HGI). We are very grateful for this level
of cooperation which can now be seen throughout much of ITU-T’s. Cooperation
not competition is the key to meeting the needs of this incredibly
Again I would like to than you all – apparently there are 200 of you here
today – but especially the management team that have guided this group
through some tough negotiations, and most of all the chairman Ghassem
Koleyni, one of the most talented chairmen in ITU. Congratulations to you
Finally I would like to thank again my friends in Maltese Ministry for
Competitiveness and Communications for all their efforts in ensuring we had
these excellent facilities available to us, and to CISCO for their
generosity in sponsoring the gala dinner on Thursday evening.
I won’t take up any more of your time as I know that you have a busy
schedule. I wish you a successful and enjoyable conclusion to your work.