Friday, May 6, 2016

Telco regulators in important meeting

DUBAI – UAE will host the 15th Arab Regulators Network (AREGNET) meeting in 2017, it was announced at the end of the 14th AREGNET meeting, held in Amman, Jordan.

Established in 2003, AREGNET members include all telecommunication regulators in the Arab World. They aim to establish cooperation, promote exchange of opinions, and prepare policies and procedures to harmonize the region’s organizational practices and achieve integrated services and sustainable development goals within the sector.

The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has concluded its participation at the event which yearly gathers leading telecommunication and information technology experts and regulators from the Arab World to exchange knowledge and experiences, discuss ways to promote cooperation, and ensure an investment-friendly environment in the Arab market.

Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori, TRA’s Director General, headed the delegates who also comprised Eng. Nasser Bin Hammad, Director International Affairs, and Hasan Al Ahbabi, Regulatory Economist. During the meeting, which tackled various subjects such as the Internet of Things (IoT), a closed panel discussion attended by heads of Telecommunication Regulators, addressed various key issues such as AREGNET’s vision and programs in the next five years; strategic techniques to promote frameworks and organizational policies formed according to the highest global standards; future plans and programs to enhance the telecommunication and information technology sector; and knowledge-based societies in support of sustainable development goals.

The attendees also discussed various projects involving AREGNET team such as over the top applications (OTT). Additionally, a consultant committee comprising the UAE, Mauritania, and Jordan was formed to review and improve AREGNET’s structure and functions. During the meeting, the UAE presented two papers regarding IoT and its role in the Arab region’s sustainable development objectives.

Prior to the formal meeting, a specialized workshop was held to provide international experts with a platform to discuss the future of Arab smart cities and the role of IoT in accelerating the region’s smart transformation through promotion of efficient services and related procedures. According to the recent report issued by McKinsey Global, IoT’s contributions to the global economy will reach USD 11 trillion annually by 2025. MENA region will achieve high growth in the cloud data amid the region’s current large-scale infrastructure and information technology development projects.

"Our participation falls in line with our joint objective to actively take part in global and regional events organized to promote cooperation and coordination, share visions and frameworks, and exchange knowledge and experiences. This is a fundamental step towards promoting digital knowledge and enhancing the Arab World’s information technology sector.
This will bolster the region’s efforts to become globally competitive, promote its telecommunication sector, help accelerate changes in the international market, and support its aggressive national and regional smart transformation initiatives to attain further growth and development," Al Mansouri said.

"The UAE Government puts a high premium on IoT as an essential part of its smart transformation program in its bid to improve its performance, ensure happiness in local society, and promote the interests of its citizens," he added.

Eng. Bin Hammad underscored the UAE’s leading global status in promoting cooperation with regard to IoT. Eng. Nasser Al Marzouqi, UAE representative in the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), is a member ITU-T Study Group 20 responsible for IoT.

According to him, the country’s status reflects its wise leaders’ keenness to actively contribute to and support efforts towards establishing smart governments and cities and placing the UAE on the global map in terms of technological developments. The country also aims to harness the abilities of its citizens to head international committees and occupy high positions in global organizations.

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