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    Mr. Hany Mahmoud Inaugurates the First AfIGF in Cairo

    Cairo, 3 October 2012
    Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Mr. Hany Mahmoud inaugurated today the first African Internet Governance Forum (AfIGF) hosted by Egypt during 3- 4 October 2012 at the conference hall in Smart Village.

    AfIGF is considered one of the outcomes of the 2005 World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS).

    The head of ICT policy unit at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the head of communication and post unit at the African Union (AU) and the director of technology programs of the Internet Governance Forum Secretariat at the United Nations (UN) are among the attendees.

    89 persons representing 48 African nations concerned with internet issues of governments, companies and academic and civil society organizations are among the participants of the AfIGF.

    The forum is meant to establish an efficient dialogue among these parties on the future of the internet. It discusses the outputs of the African regional forums for internet governance, thus to present one African vision at the global Internet Governance Forum (IGF) 2012, held in Azerbaijan from 6-9 November, 2012.

    Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Mr. Hany Mahmoud, says: “holding the first African IGF forum is a consolidation of the collaboration means among countries of the continent in order to set an African business agenda for the international community on topics related to internet governance.”

    His Excellency calls upon African nations for cross-border cooperation in developing the required policies to activate cyber security and presenting the Egyptian expertize in the establishment of Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT).

    Moreover, Mr. Mahmoud has revealed the national initiative of “broadband” and its implementation plans. One of its main mechanisms is modernizing infrastructure adopted by Egypt under the name “e-misr” to increase economy growth, create new job opportunities and contribute to social and cultural development.

    Minister of ICT has also disclosed the significance of local content development, which is slow and delayed in the African continent notwithstanding internet value as a good tool to reach rural and remote areas and provide them with services they deserve.

    Mr. Mahmoud has stressed that Egypt’s faith in finding a common responsibility for the future development of the current mechanisms and proposing innovative models to tackle policies that encourage the establishment of a multilingual content and internationalized domain name (IDN).

    At the end of his speech, the minister denotes that the current agenda will discuss a number of significant issues such as the report of the 15th session for the concerned committee of harnessing of science and technology for development, affiliated with the Economic and Social Council   (ECOSOC) for improving governance of the internet.

    Among the issues of discussion are: reviewing decisions of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) and evaluating resolutions of the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT), which includes a lot of articles on public policy issues of the Internet.

    The Forum explores a number of imperative issues at the level of internet policy among which are: achieving maximum benefit from the internet in economic and social development affairs, as well as assuring freedom of multilingualism and multiculturalism on the internet.

    Furthermore, the forum talks about the exchange of experience in cyberspace governance and benefiting of it, access provision to a large number of network users, ensuring freedom of expression and free flow of information and ideas on the net, in addition to building local capabilities aiming to enhance use efficiency.

    Under the initiative of AFrinic Organization and UNECA, this forum is held in Egypt in the framework of the 6th Global Internet Governance Forum that took place in Kenya 2011. The goal is to hold the first African Forum, thus promoting African participation in the Global Forum.

    Represented by MCIT, Egypt has been invited to participate as a representative for North African countries, being an active African member at the international forum and view its interest in internet governance affairs.

    The invitation was enthusiastically accepted to emphasize the Egyptian presence in the African continent post January 25 Revolution; suggesting Egypt to host the first African Forum, a proposal that was met with wide acceptance from all participants.

    Additionally, holding the forum in Egypt is a clear reflection of the enormous strides achieved by Egypt in the field of publishing and supporting internet services, confirmed by statistics as these forums proved remarkably successful.

    Every year, the Forum’s agenda encompasses a special session to record the outcomes of the WSIS, the paragraphs it comprises and special material on internet governance issues.

    These issues are scheduled to be reviewed and their outcomes will be activated, particularly with regard to means of collaboration among countries of the continent.

    Reports about regional internet governance forums, held lately in Africa, will be reviewed. Reports about forums on state level will then be presented, followed by sessions on topics of interest to the internet society.

    These topics include access and diversity, pressing issues, critical resources management, and internet governance for development, in addition to security and accessibility and privacy.
    Moreover, a special session about digital strategy for Africa is to take place.


    Related Webcasts
    First African Internet Governance Forum in Cairo
    Time: 02:16   Size: 52.4 MB
    Date Published: 4 Oct 2012
      


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