July 2003

New York, June 26, 2003: The WiFi opportunity for developing nations

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On June 26th, W2i, the Wireless Internet Institute and the United Nations Information and Communication Technologies Task Force joined forces to organize the Wireless Internet Opportunities for Developing Nations conference at UN Headquarters in New York City. There were representatives of developing nations with leading technology vendors, carriers, investors, regulators, entrepreneurs and field practitioners from around the world.

The event drew more than 200 participants including practitioners,

 governmnt regulators, international development experts, academics, NGOs and private sector technology experts to explore solutions for successful deployment of wireless Internet in the developing world.  Participants included IBM, Intel, Agere, the World Bank, MIT Media Lab, the Wi-Fi Alliance and a number of leading wireless internet  stakeholders.

The conference featured plenary sessions and structured brainstorming workshops to establish strategies necessary to overcome existing obstacles and develop environments favourable to the broad deployment of WiFi infrastructures.

The conference was opened by Talal Abu-Ghazaleh, Vice Chairman of the ICT Task Force and Chief Executive Officer of TAG International, who delivered an opening statement from Secretary-General Kofi Annan: “We urgently need to reach a clear understanding of wireless Internet’s development potential, identify the obstacles, and develop a realistic plan of action that would bring together all stakeholders

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