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Office of the Secretary-General

​​​​​​​​​​Houlin Zhao: ITU Secretary-General


ITU Member States re-elected Houlin Zhao as ITU Secretary-General on 1 November 2018. He began his second ​four-year term on 1 January 2019.

Mr Zhao is​ an information and communication technology (ICT) engineer who has served in a variety of senior management positions at ITU.​

Prior to first being elected as ITU Secretary-General in 2014, Zhao served eight years as ITU Deputy Secretary-General, supporting the work of the Secretary-General, principally in terms of day-to-day management, including human resources, financial administration, improving efficiency, and working to help broaden ITU's membership, particularly in terms of academic institutions. He also served two elected terms as Director of ITU's Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB), which develops technical standards to ensure worldwide ICT interoperability. Before that, he was a Senior Counsellor with TSB for 12 years. 

Born in 1950 in Jiangsu, China, Mr Zhao graduated from Nanjing University of Posts and Telecommunications, and holds an MSc in Telematics from the University of Essex in the United Kingdom.​ 

Latest News


Speeches by the Secretary-General are posted in the language delivered.
  • ITU Council 2022: State of the Union Address

    21 March 2022: This session of ITU Council is an opportunity for us to make a difference—for our Union, and for the world. Let's seize it! Let's build on the lessons learned! Let us align our work, resources and priorities with the opportunities and challenges presented by today's digital transformation—and make sure that we continue to meet the needs and expectations of our members and the people we serve.​​

  • World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-19) 2019: Opening ceremony
    ​​​28 October 2019​: WRC-2019 is not only the important conference for the world radio industry and radio experts, not only important for the ITU family.  Rather it will play an important role for the entire human race for the next decade or even longer.  With its influence on modern human development, it will be linked with Sharm-El-Sheikh of Egypt.