KIGALI, June 17 (Xinhua) -- A new set of regional initiatives for 2023-2025 aimed at addressing the global connectivity gap was adopted in Kigali, the Rwandan capital, at the conclusion of the World Telecommunication Development Conference (WTDC).
The initiatives outlined in the Kigali Action Plan address specific needs for each major region of the world to advance and accelerate digital transformation.
According to the resolutions, every school will be connected to the internet and every young person will be able to access information and communication technology (ICT) services.
The conference also adopted the Partner2Connect Digital Coalition, the primary platform to foster new partnerships around meaningful connectivity and digital transformation globally, focusing on the hardest-to-connect communities.
The resolutions also include driving efforts to advance digital transformation for sustainable development and recognizing the enormous potential that ICTs have to create positive, meaningful and lasting change.
Creating a thriving environment for entrepreneurship and digital innovation ecosystems to help accelerate the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) has also been adopted as a new resolution to accelerate global connectivity.
"Having this conference take place in Rwanda is an important milestone. Let's build on this momentum to strengthen the image of ITU (International Telecommunication Union) as a UN specialized agency not just for technology but also for development and to accelerate digital transformation for all, here in Africa and the rest of the world," ITU Secretary-General Zhao Houlin told the WTDC closing ceremony on Thursday.
Paula Ingabire, Rwandan minister of ICT and innovation, said the new resolutions adopted in Kigali will play a crucial role in bridging the digital divide and closing the global connectivity gap.
"Rwanda was privileged to host this very first World Telecommunication Development Conference as an African-led event in Africa," she said. "We had set out to make sure this conference is different, and that it has to make a difference."
The June 6-16 technology conference was aimed to reinvigorate progress on SDGs and put digital uptake at the forefront for the remaining seven years of the UN's Decade of Action.
The event's theme was "Connecting the unconnected to achieve sustainable development."
The Kigali Action Plan agreed at the conference charts a course for digital development that aligns closely with the SDGs set out by the United Nations for 2030.
It also defines the work plan of the ITU's Development Sector (ITU-D) until the next World Telecommunication Development Conference. ■