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2014 Busan ICT Ministerial Meeting

Busan Declaration on the Future Role of Telecommunications/ICTs in achieving sustainable development


Adopted on 19 October 2014 

1.       We, the Ministers of Afghanistan, Angola, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Barbados, Bolivia, Cambodia, Cameroon, Costa Rica, Côte d'Ivoire, Cuba, Djibouti, the Dominican Republic, the Federated Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, France, Gabon, Ghana, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Korea, Laos, Lebanon, Malawi, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Nepal, Poland, Qatar, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Singapore, Somalia, South Africa, Switzerland, Tunisia, Timor-Leste, Uganda, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, the United States of America, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe gathered in Busan, Korea, on 19 October 2014 for the 2014 Busan Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) Ministerial Meeting to discuss the future role of the telecommunications/ICTs in enabling and accelerating socially, economically and environmentally sustainable growth and development for everyone.

2.       We state our common goal to promote sustainable development that embraces all countries, regions, generations, genders, races, including marginalized and vulnerable population, and people of all social statuses by bridging the digital divide and facilitating innovation in the field of telecommunications/ICTs.

Upholding the Internationally Agreed Commitments


3.       We share a vision that development goals should place growth, inclusiveness, sustainability, as well as innovation and partnership, at the core and leave no one behind in pursuit of the vision of Broadband for All, for which the United Nations and the international community aim.

4.       We share the fundamental goal of building an inclusive information society enabling everyone to create, access, utilize and share information and knowledge, and of attaining internationally agreed development goals and objectives, including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the outputs of World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS).

5.       We firmly believe that the strategic and innovative use of telecommunications/ICTs will make it possible to address existing and emerging global challenges and will play a critical role in achieving sustainable development goals, taking into account the ongoing dialogue on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the Post 2015 Development Agenda. Enabling people to access telecommunications/ICTs anywhere at any time will create new opportunities for employment, productivity, education, health and public services, and will address environmental and socioeconomic challenges that the international community is facing. 

6.       We believe that universal and affordable access to telecommunications/ICTs is essential to inclusive development of economies, societies and cultures, and contributes to sustainable development by providing new opportunities throughout the world. 

7.       We welcome ICT capacity-building efforts across the world that include developing countries, least developed countries (LDCs)and small island developing states(SIDS), landlocked countries, essential to enhancing confidence and reliability in cyberspace and overcoming the digital divide.

Fostering telecommunications/ICTs for Sustainable Growth


8.       We agree to facilitate economic growth and sociocultural development by intensively fostering the use of telecommunications/ICTs as a growth engine. In such efforts, telecommunications/ICTs should be viewed comprehensively, beyond the aspects of infrastructure and technology, to encompass economic development, enhancement of the quality of people's lives and social integration.

9.       We reaffirm that telecommunications/ICTs will play a foundational role in effectively addressing global challenges, such as illiteracy, poverty, unemployment, climate change, disaster management, population aging, enhancing the level of economic growth and societal growth across the world, and achieving sustainable development.

Bridging the Digital Divide for Inclusive Development


10.   Recognizing that building telecommunication infrastructure and enhancing access to telecommunications/ICTs can the bridge digital divide, we give priority to the development of infrastructure and ICT capacity building so as to enable universal access to telecommunications/ICTs for all countries and peoples.

11.   We recognize the importance of the common vision to improve access to telecommunications/ICTs and adopt telecommunications/ICTs as a new growth enabler, particularly among developing countries, and support to ensure that all countries can put this vision into practice. In particular, we endeavor to provide sufficient and continuous support so that more opportunities to access telecommunications/ICTs are provided to LDCs and SIDS.

12.   We recognize that bridging the digital divide requires us to focus on global telecommunications/ICT inclusiveness, accessibility, affordability and skills that enable their use in all countries and regions and by all peoples, including marginalized and vulnerable population, such as women, children, people with low incomes, indigenous peoples, old persons and persons with disabilities, so that everyone can enjoy the benefits of telecommunications/ICTs.

Promoting the Sustainability of the ICT Sector

13.   We recognize that in order to promote the beneficial use of telecommunications/ICTs, there is a need to manage challenges and risks emerging from their rapid growth.

14.   We focus on enhancing the sustainable and safe use of telecommunications/ICTs and work towards minimizing the negative impact of undesired collateral effects, such as cyber security threats, potential harms to the most vulnerable parts of society, in particular children, and negative effects on the environment, including e-waste.

Promoting Innovation and Partnership


15.   We share recognition that fostering the creative ICT capacity of all countries, regardless of their level of ICT development, contributes to maximizing their sociocultural and economic development.

16.   Noting that the ICT sector is constantly evolving, with new solutions and opportunities, we recognize the global need to adopt policies that encourage continuous technological innovation to foster the evolution of telecommunications/ICTs.

17.   We jointly promote the fostering of creative talents, innovative investment in telecommunication/ICT infrastructure and application of ICTs, in order to harness and stimulate innovation in the telecommunication/ICT sector.

18.   Recognizing that a diverse array of organizations and entities can contribute to the sustainable growth of the ICT sector, we promote partnerships fostering engagement and cooperation of all entities in pursuing our goals.

Moving Forward


19.   We recognize that the role and commitment of all countries and all regions are important in implementing the goals and agreements set forth in this Declaration, and recommend that the international community work together towards the sustainable and inclusive development of telecommunications/ICTs.

20.   We especially call upon the international community to actively seek measures through which telecommunications/ICTs can contribute to the Post 2015 Development Agenda, and we invite all stakeholders to contribute their invaluable experience, expertise and resources. 

21.   We endorse a shared global vision for the development of the telecommunication/ICT sector, under the agenda "Connect 2020", envisaging "an information society, empowered by the interconnected world, where telecommunications/ICTs enable and accelerate socially, economically and environmentally sustainable growth and development for everyone."  We shall cooperate in order to achieve growth, inclusiveness, sustainability, innovation and partnership in the telecommunication/ICTs sector in an affordable and secure manner.