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ICTs for a Sustainable World #ICT4SDG

3rd Meeting of the Council Working Group on International Internet-related Public Policy Issues

Geneva, Switzerland, 12 November 2013

Closing Remarks

​Distinguished colleagues,
Ladies and gentlemen,

On behalf of the Secretary-General I would like to thank you all for your participation, and your efforts to move forward on this sensitive issue of the role of governments.

I am sure the responses to the questionnaire you have formulated will greatly facilitate the dialogue on this issue – not just in this group but also in dialogue taking place at other international forums in particular MPP, WSIS+10 and PP-14. So we encourage responses as early as possible and at the latest end of January.

The proposal that the group be a repository for sharing national experience and best practices is an excellent idea and we will develop an area of the CWG website as a repository for these types of contributions including the three from Japan, Rwanda and Brazil that have already been submitted. We encourage others to contribute, especially developing and least developed countries.

As we know we have a very intense 12 months ahead of us, and this topic will be high on the agenda at various events over the next 12 months. I hope the consultations and report of the Group will help Member States to understand and respect each others’ views, including the views of the developing countries that unfortunately have not been widely represented in the meetings of the group even though they form the majority of our Members.

Having this better understanding will help to build trust and partnerships between governments as well as other stakeholders. This will encourage the compromises that will be necessary to achieve consensus.

So the next meeting of the CWG will be very important and recognising that 2 days might not be sufficient perhaps we will consider having a three day meeting.It is now 5 years since the establishment of the Dedicated Group, which held 8 meetings, and the next meeting of this Group will be its fourth.  We have benefited from having the same chairman for all these meetings and I would like you to join me in thanking him for his dedication, perseverance and patience despite the difficult and sensitive discussions, always maintaining a calm, impartial and friendly attitude – thank you Majed.

Thank you all and I wish you a safe journey home.