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ICTs for a Sustainable World #ICT4SDG

Speech by ITU Secretary-General, Dr Hamadoun I. Touré

WTISD 2010 Celebration and Award Ceremony

17 May 2010, Shanghai, China



Distinguished colleagues,
Ladies and gentlemen,


It is now my honour to say a few opening remarks before we give this year’s World Telecommunication and Information Society Day Awards to our three laureates.

World Telecommunication and Information Society Day – WTISD – is celebrated annually on 17 May, to mark the founding of ITU and the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention in 1865.

On this day, each year, ITU’s Member States and Sector Members celebrate by organizing appropriate national and company-wide programmes with a view to stimulating reflection and exchanges of ideas on the theme adopted by ITU Council.

This year, ITU is very honoured to have the WTISD Ceremony exceptionally held in Shanghai, during Expo 2010 under the kind invitation of MIIT and the Expo 2010. I am very honoured to have the presence of those Chinese Excellencies with us. I wish to express our sincere appreciation for their efforts to share our pleasure for ITU’s special day.

This year, in honour of the theme of Expo 2010, ITU Council chose the theme ‘Better City, Better Life with ICTs’.

The theme is particularly appropriate, because we now live, for the first time in human history, in a world where more than half the global population lives in an urban environment. Compare that to the beginning of the 20th century, when only one in seven people were urban dwellers.

Today, over 400 cities worldwide have a population of a million or more, and there are around 20 urban agglomerations of over ten million people.

This trend is certain to continue, and we can expect cities to grow, and new cities to spring up. So we must use every tool at our disposal – and ICTs in particular – to make life better for the billions of people who live and work in them.

Personally, I am absolutely confident that ICTs will play a huge role in improving city life.

I was fortunate enough to be in Ningbo over the past few days for the ‘ICT & Urban Development Forum’, and we saw many examples of the beneficial role ICTs will play:

We saw how cities of the future will be more efficient, both in terms of public services and in the conservation and use of critical resources like energy and water.

We saw how ICTs will make cities will become safer, cleaner and less noisy – with fewer accidents, reduced crime rates, less pollution and quieter vehicles.

We saw how people in urban environments will become healthier and better educated as new technologies play an increasing role in delivering healthcare and education.

And we saw how ICTs are already making cities become more human, reflecting our fundamental desire to communicate.

Ladies and gentlemen,

We are here this afternoon to celebrate WTISD and to honour our laureates for 2010.

This year the WTISD Award goes to three eminent personalities who have contributed to the ongoing digital revolution, in recognition of their dedication to promoting ICTs as a means of providing a better life for humanity.

The first laureate is the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Abdul Razak. He has made connectivity one of his priorities. As part of the New Economic Model for Malaysia, he has placed a high priority on strengthening ICT infrastructure. His administration has supported the work of ITU in strengthening global cybersecurity through the IMPACT Centre in Cyberjaya near Kuala Lumpur.

The second laureate is the Executive Director, Chairman and CEO of China Mobile, Mr Wang Jianzhou. I hardly need to introduce Mr Wang here in China, since China Mobile operates the world’s largest mobile network, and now has over 500 million subscribers, with a network covering every major city – as well as over 99% of the Chinese population, and Mr. Wang is a well-known Chinese figure in Davos, in Barcelona and in the international mobile communication world and, in particular, he is a well recognized representative of the rapid development of the Chinese telecommunication industry.

And the third laureate is the President and CEO of the Corporation for National Research Initiatives (CNRI), Mr Robert Kahn. Mr Kahn was one of the early pioneers of the internet, and laid the foundations of the TCP/IP protocol architecture, which is a standard operating feature of the internet.









2010年5月17日, 中国上海













我们看到,ICT如何使城市变得更加安全、洁净和安静 – 减少事故,降低犯罪率、减少污染且使汽车更加安静。