ICT Access for Africa: Intel, UN and ITU Efforts to Globalize Broadband
Broadband, connectivity, Wi-Fi, accessibility and education efforts are all priorities for the ongoing efforts in developing nations and regions around the globe. Intel, along with the United Nations and International Telecommunication Union (ITU), among others, is participating this month in the Connect Africa Summit, which aims to bring together human, technical and financial resources to speed development and improvement of Africa’s Information and Communication Technology, or ICT infrastructure. Expanding broadband, wireless and mobile access technologies is the current push, after indications that Africa’s general ICT development is lagging behind its unprecedented adoption of mobile phone technology (400 percent in just a few years – well ahead of projections).
Dr. Hamadoun Touré is secretary-general of the International Telecommunication Union. His call for what he refers to as a “Marshall Plan for ICT infrastructure development in Africa,” has been heard by the United Nations, and particularly by Intel Chairman Craig Barrett who, leading the UN’s Global Alliance for ICT and Development, or UN GAID, is working to bring the leading ICT companies in Silicon Valley and around the world to the challenges in Africa.
The United Nations’s Millennium Development Goals are driving innovation around the world, as the challenge of reducing global poverty by half by 2015 looms. The Connect Africa effort brings together private enterprise and non-governmental organizations for a two-day summit in Kigali, Rwanda, beginning on October 29, hosted by Rwanda President Paul Kagame and John Kufour, president of Ghana and chairman of the African Union.
Intel’s World Ahead Program, established in May 2006, has already seen the chip maker pledge more than $1 billion over five years to bridge the digital divide and bring full access to technology to the developing world.
Related Stories: IntelWorldAhead
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