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Networked RFID: Systems and Services
Geneva, 14-15 February 2006

Mr. Houlin ZHAO
Director, Telecommunication Standardization Bureau

Mr. Chairman,
Mr. Secretary-General,
Distinguished delegates,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good morning,

On behalf of ITU-T, please let me welcome you to this Workshop on "Networked RFID: Systems and Services".

We are all honored by the presence of Mr. Utsumi, Secretary-General of ITU, at this opening session. He finds our workshop very important that he managed to find time to join us. We have just heard his views on the situation we are facing after the WSIS Tunis phase. He encourages us to be more active in the global ICT market. On behalf of the workshop organizers, and the whole participants, I would like to thank Mr. Utsumi for his guidance.

As one of today’s hot information technologies, the development of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Systems opens new possibilities to support object-to-object communications in ubiquitous services and applications. Analysts predict that RFID will revolutionize areas of industry including supply chain management, security and mobile telecommunication services. Currently, the market for RFID standards is extremely fragmented. Many RFID applications still lack global standards for data formats, compatibility, interoperability, interference, personal information protection, authentication, key management and others. ITU will try its best to work with its Members to improve this situation.

This event will focus on the use of RFID technology in networked environments, and review international standardization. Particular emphasis will be given to the impact that networked RFID applications will have on telecommunication networks. And, we will also analyze how far existing standards can support networked RFID applications and services, and identify where enhanced or new standards might be needed. If possible, we might come up with a roadmap for a standardization framework, including the clarification of the role of applicable SDOs, forums and consortia.

I am pleased to note the fact that three companies have prepared small, but important exhibitions to show their products of RFID.

For those who might not have had a chance to participate in ITU-T activities during recent years, I would like to pick up two things on the current situation. The first thing to mention is that ITU-T has improved its efficient, open, transparent, and energetic environment. The famous AAP procedure is unarguable proof of this. With this procedure, ITU-T can approve ITU-T Recommendations in less than two months after an SG or a WP agrees the text. Such a speed can challenge anyone in today’s market. The second thing that I would like to mention here is the timely responsiveness ITU-T has demonstrated in recent years. The establishment of NGN Focus Group is an excellent example in this respect. I hope this workshop will provide us with another good example to prove that ITU can reply to the market needs in a timely fashion.

As RFID is a relatively fresh topic for ITU-T, almost all ITU-T Study Group Chairmen including the TSAG Chair have actively participated in the steering committee of this workshop. I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks to Mr. Probst, Chair of the Steering Committee and all members of the steering committee, to the Session Chairs, and to the Speakers. I would also like to express my high appreciations to the ITU staff who have spared no effort to organize this workshop. I should not forget to thank the exhibitors who attend our meeting with their products. Last but not least, I would like to express my appreciation and thanks to the workshop sponsor Freescale Semiconductor Company who kindly sponsors all coffee breaks during the next two days. To conclude my speech, I would like to invite all of you to join me at a reception tonight at the ITU Cafeteria of Montbrillant starting from 6:30 p.m.

I wish you a successful meeting.

Thank you for your attention.


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