Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation Forum 2015

The Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation Forum, the annual ICT event of the Commonwealth of Nations was held at the Safari Park Hotel and Casino, Nairobi, Kenya from the 14-16 September 2015. The event facilitates the exchange of ideas between senior country officials, the private sector and civil society within the Commonwealth, but also beyond. The 2015 event in Kenya drew high-level participation from member governments, regulators and industry from 31 countries from the Commonwealth and beyond.

The Nairobi event was officially opened by the Honourable Minister of Information, Communications and Technology of Kenya, Dr Fred Okeng’o Matiang’i who invited the audience to commit more of their efforts towards greater broadband access and use.

Speaking of the progress achieved by Kenya, Francis Wangusi, Director-General of the country’s Communications Authority stressed the importance of digital services as more people access smart devices.

Representing the International Telecommunications Union, Deputy Secretary-General Malcolm Johnson expressed the readiness of the Union to collaborate with the CTO to advance the development of ICTs.

Also present at the opening of the event was Paul Njaga, Chief Executive Officer of Chase Bank Kenya and Theresa Swineheart, Senior Adviser on global strategy to ICANN’s president. Mr Njaga spoke of the bank’s effort to using technology to address barriers to banking services across the country. Ms Swineheart delivered a keynote on the openness of the consultation process and the issues at stake of the Internet Assigned Names Authority (IANA) transition. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) have an important role in managing the resources in the new IANA regime through an independent subsidiary under contract with the five regional Internet registries and the Internet Engineering Task Force.

Issues discussed during the Forum included:

  • International connectivity, and connectivity for rural communities
  • Regulation
  • Broadband
  • M-commerce and mobile money
  • The emerging consensus over the governance of the Internet
  • Use of connectivity in health, education and agriculture
  • Technology trends
  • Youth and ICTs

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Marcel Belingue, Senior Manager, Head of Membership & Communications
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