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    MCIT Participates in IGF's First Open Consultation Meeting in Geneva

    Date published: 10 March 2009

    An official delegation from Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) participated in the first Open Consultation Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) that was held in Geneva, Switzerland, from February 23-24, 2009.

    The meeting aimed at discussing the preparations for the fourth IGF meeting, scheduled in Egypt in November 2009.
    The open consultation was followed by a Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Group meeting held from February 25–26, 2009. The two meetings tackled Egypt's role as the host country in IGF 09 as well as the forum sessions and parallel workshops.

    MCIT presented Egypt's vision, suggestions and recommendations.
    The February IGF Open Consultation meeting was the first in a series of meetings to be held throughout the year to confer the agenda of the Sharm El-Sheikh IGF, probing into the different stakeholders views.

    In December 2008, a high-level official delegation from Ministry of Communications and Information Technology took part in the third meeting of the IGF held in Hyderabad, India. During the meeting, Egypt was selected to be the host of the IGF meeting 2009.

    Holding the IGF in Egypt mirrors the tremendous leaps Egypt has realized in spreading and supporting internet services nationwide. Statistics reveal steady increase in the number of internet users in Egypt throughout the past decade.

    On the other hand, initiatives launched by MCIT to offer internet services at affordable prices enabled a larger segment of the Egyptian society to access and make use of the internet on a wider spectrum.

    On February 9th, 2009, MCIT held a forum session during Cairo ICT 2009 Trade Fair and Forum as part of Egypt's preparations for hosting IGF meeting 2009. The session reflected on the focal role the private sector has been playing in internet governance on the international level.

    It also discussed issues like the private sector’s relevance to internet governance and how companies can recognize available opportunities and effective strategies in this domain.

    The first IGF meeting was held in Athens in 2006 where Dr. Tarek Kamel, Minister of Communications and Information Technology participated in it. The second forum was held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 2007. The Egyptian delegation, mainly from NTRA, was one of the biggest delegations participating in the forum from the Arab World.

    The IGF is an outcome of the Tunis phase of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) that took place in 2005. The objective of IGF is to support the United Nations Secretary-General in carrying out the mandate from WSIS with regard to convening a new forum for multi-stakeholder policy dialogue. 

    About NTRA
    The National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA) acts as an independent and prudent arbiter among the different ICT sector stakeholders: the industry, the state and consumers. Founded in 2003 according to the Telecommunications Regulation law as a national authority to administer the telecommunication sector, the scope of its work, as a general outline, covers issues related to transparency, open competition, universal service and the protection of user rights.

    About IGF
    The Internet Governance Forum (IGF) is a multi-stakeholder forum for policy dialogue on issues of Internet governance. The establishment of the IGF was formally announced by the UN secretary-general in July 2006 as one of the outputs of the second phase of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS). The first IGF meeting was held in Athens, Greece, in 2006, the second in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 2007 and the third in Heidar Abad, India end of 2007.

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