N°1 of PP-14 Highlights: Building digital bridges in Busan
President Park Guen-hye of the Republic of Korea graced the opening of ITU’s 19th Plenipotentiary Conference (PP-14) with her presence. The three-week conference (20 October-7 November) got off to a dynamic start at BEXCO Center in the coastal city of Busan. The opening ceremony was addressed by the Republic of Korea’s Minister for Science, ICT and Future Planning, Yanghee Choi; the Mayor of Busan City, Byung-soo Suh; ITU Secretary-General Dr Hamadoun I. Touré; United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon via a video message; and President Park (in that order).
In his opening remarks, Dr Touré told delegates that they were in Busan to shape the future. “We are not just talking about the future of ITU, but the future of the ICT sector – which now cuts across every business sector worldwide, and reaches into the lives of almost everyone on the planet. I am counting on membership to be bold, to be visionary, and to dream – to dream big!,” he stated.
A high-tech video clip, a commemorative stamp to mark PP-14, and a special performance of traditional Korean dance by the National Dance Company were all part of the impressive opening programme. The afternoon saw the conference agree on its structure, elect its presiding officers, an appeal by Dr Touré to step up efforts to address the Ebola crisis, and the beginning of policy statements from high-ranking officials, for the most part ministers from ITU Member States. Following is a summary of Day 1 of the conference.