Deputy Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Malcolm Johnson said that FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 will be of great interest to millions around the world, considering that it is the first time such a mega event is being held in the Arab region, and that the tournament will witness for the first time the use of modern high-quality technologies in broadcasting and managing logistics operations.
In a statement to Qatar News Agency (QNA) on the sidelines of the ITU's Plenipotentiary Conference held in the Romanian capital Bucharest, Johnson said that Qatar's communications and information technology infrastructure will enable it to organise a successful tournament in broadcasting events and matches to the world.
He said that Qatar and the ITU are co-operating closely during this tournament, as the union provides the radio frequency spectrum for satellites to broadcast matches around the world, in addition to the video technology that will be used, which depends on the ITU standard. He stressed the keenness of the ITU on the success of Qatar in organising a wonderful tournament, especially since the ITU is a close partner to Qatar in this aspect, and they have worked closely for this over the past years.
Johnson praised the infrastructure in the telecommunications sector and the digital transformation owned by Qatar, by examining the developments of information technology when he was on a visit to Qatar a few years ago, and said that he visited Qatar Science and Technology Park and Qatar Mobility Innovations Centre, stressing the positive impact of the two facilities on the technology sector in Qatar and the world.
He also spoke about the challenges facing the digital transformation process in the world, and said that there are many new innovations such as artificial intelligence, 5th generation, and new broadband standards, and work is also under way on the 6th generation. "We must ensure that these new technologies are distributed equitably around the world in a way that allows everyone to benefit by offering them at an affordable price."
He pointed out that there are 2.7bn people around the world who are still not connected to the Internet, and therefore it must be ensured that they are reached, especially since most of them live in rural areas and isolated communities that are difficult to reach, and that the investment to reach them is not very profitable. He added that this requires broad partnerships between the public and private sectors, and that governments work closely with the private sector to reach these people and provide them with technology at affordable prices, which is the only way to achieve the sustainable development goals of the United Nations. (QNA)

Regarding the activity of the International Telecommunication Union, His Excellency explained that it is mainly based on providing the frequency spectrum for new technologies, noting that next year in Dubai, the World Radiocommunication Conference will be organized to amend the international treaty on the use of frequency spectrum and satellite orbits, so that it is ensured that the most requested services possess enough spectrum.
His Excellency also pointed out that the union is working to standardise the use of technology, so that there are international standards to allow people to invest in equipment that meets the standards to enable operators to provide services, which reduces the cost of using this technology.
His Excellency stated that the union has a number of projects and initiatives in this regard, such as the initiative to provide laptop computers to schools to ensure that people around the world benefit from this technology, as this can only be done by working closely with Member States.
On the work of the Plenipotentiary Conference of the International Telecommunication Union, His Excellency said that this event is one of the most important events of the International Union because it is held every four years, where the conference adopts the strategic plan and the financial plan that deals with how to finance that strategic plan.
To conclude his statements to Qatar News Agency (QNA), His Excellency indicated that the participants in the conference will take a number of decisions on the areas that the International Telecommunication Union should focus on during the next four years to ensure that the union obtain the full support of the members to move forward in its mission of providing the benefits of technology to people everywhere at an affordable price, so the outcome of this conference will largely determine how successful the world is in connecting people to the Internet all over the world. (QNA)
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