Secretary-General, Honourable Ministers, / and distinguished guests,
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I am very honored to join you at the 19th ITU Plenipotentiary Conference on behalf of the Korean government. Korea is more than happy to host this Conference, and I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere appreciation to all delegation members from each country for coming all the way to Busan.
Also, I would like to express my gratitude to Secretary-General Hamadoun Touré and officials of the ITU for their support in putting this event together.
Celebrating the 150th anniversary of its establishment next year, the ITU has faithfully served its purpose to promote co-operation and exchange between Member States, to improve the access of underserved communities worldwide to ICTs, and to develop and extend the benefits of modern telecommunications.
Since becoming a member of the ITU in 1952, the Republic of Korea has actively participated in various meetings and projects led by the ITU, expanding its partnership with other Member States.
Now 62 years after the joining the ITU, all these efforts are crowned with our hosting of the 19th Plenipotentiary Conference here in Busan, Korea, which will be a landmark event in the Korea-ITU history.
Honorable Ministers and distinguished guests!
As you all know, development and spread of information and communication technologies have created the digital economy and led to significant economic and social changes in production, consumption, employment and our cultural lives. Furthermore, new technologies and services continue to be developed, opening a brighter future for the ICT industry in the days to come.
However, despite those achievements, advanced ICTs also pose some risks such as the increasing digital divide and threats to privacy, and we must not underestimate those challenges.
With this in mind, governments around the world need to work together to realize the benefits of ICTs while minimizing their negative impacts. Not only that, we must strive to connect the benefits of ICTs to the entire world and every corner of society to raise the quality of life for people around the world.
Against this backdrop, the Korean government set out the vision "Hyper-connected Creative Korea" based on our firm belief that a hyper-connected era will be ushered in, connecting all people, things and devices.
We strongly believe that benefits from ICT must be shared by all human beings, and we are working hard to make this possible. The Korean government will keep making its utmost effort to improve the ICT capabilities of developing countries through cooperation with ITU under the vision of connecting the world by 2020.
In this context, I believe the Korean candidate for the Director of the Technology Standardization Bureau, Dr. Lee Jae-sub can play a great role in the process, since he dedicated 27 years of his life to the ITU Standardization Sector.
Last but not least, I hope this event brings many fruitful results and comes up with wise policies to support advancement of ICTs worldwide, so that the humankind can enjoy the benefits of future Information and Communication Technologies.