Connection unites

[b]Late 2009 was rich in international events for Minsk. The Connect the CIS Space summit at the National Library has become an important stage in the International Telecommunication Union’s global initiative — Connect the World — aimed at building a global information society[/b] The Minsk meeting aimed to mobilise technical, financial and human resources and promote the shift to digital formats. The latest technologies and communication means could become an efficient anti-crisis instrument for the CIS since they can reduce financial, labour and energy expenses.
Late 2009 was rich in international events for Minsk. The Connect the CIS Space summit at the National Library has become an important stage in the International Telecommunication Union’s global initiative — Connect the World — aimed at building a global information society

The Minsk meeting aimed to mobilise technical, financial and human resources and promote the shift to digital formats. The latest technologies and communication means could become an efficient anti-crisis instrument for the CIS since they can reduce financial, labour and energy expenses.
Minsk was chosen to host the event, since Belarus has recently transformed into a key player in the field of information-communication technologies. Last year, our country exported over $300m of IT services. According to Forbes, Belarus has the same income per capita as India and is ahead of Russia and Ukraine. Meanwhile, Belarusian High-Tech Park residents are fulfilling orders for Microsoft and other leading western IT brands.
The Secretary General of the International Telecommunication Union, Hamadoun Tourй, notes the significant progress of the country in the IT sphere. Meeting President Lukashenko, he thanked him for the high level of forum organisation (gathering CIS presidents, among other guests). “Last year, we dreamt of this meeting. I’m glad that our dreams have come true,” he said. Mr. Tourй believes that Minsk’s attention to the forum should contribute to the development of international interaction. “These events enable many countries to share experience. Moreover, we’ve invited the private sector to participate, hoping they’ll show
interest in investment into the telecommunication branch,” he noted.
Mr. Lukashenko called upon Connect the CIS Space summit participants to more actively share experience and closely co-operate in the field of modern technologies. “We are open to mutually beneficial co-operation, realising promising projects in the field of information and telecommunication technologies,” stressed the President. He then addressed foreign IT companies and financial institutions (such as the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development) — who were present at the forum — saying, “Favourable conditions have been established in our country, which make it possible to invest capital profitably.”
President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev and President of Kyrgyzstan Kurmanbek Bakiev also delivered speeches at the summit, stressing the necessity to co-ordinate efforts in the IT sphere and increase investments in this sector.
It is expected that concrete projects in the IT sphere should take place throughout the CIS after the Minsk summit.

By Vitaly Volyanyuk
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