Mr. Carlos Slim participated in the International Telecommunications Union's (ITU) 6th Broadband Commission for Digital Development Meeting. Mr. Slim is the commission's co-chairman.
September 23, 2012. New York City.

Carlos Slim Helú, Opening Speech. Broadband Commission for Digital Development 6th Meeting, New York City, 23 September 2012

Good morning to all, Excellencies, industrial leaders, distinguished colleagues, ladies and gentlemen.

Is a real pleasure to be with all of you again at a new meeting of the Broadband Commission for Digital Development. It is also an honor to co-chair this meeting with my friend His Excellency President Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda who is coming later and to have by my side the two co-vice chairs of the commission Dr. Hamadoun Touré, Secretary General of ITU and Irina Bokova, Directora General of UNESCO.

This is our 6th meeting since we started our work back in 2010, it has been three years of activity and progress building the case for the potential of broadband networks, services, and applications to drive economic growth, bring social inclusion and promote sustainable development. During this period our commission has maintained a very practical approach, focused on producing concrete deliverables and clear recommendations for policy makers, the industry and the academy, the civil society and other stakeholders. During the meeting we will have today, we will be presenting our latest Report State of Broadband 2012 which has been produced with inputs provided by all of us. This report presents the clear progress that we are making to guard the commission targets for 2015 and we can say very proudly, that our commission and the organization that we represent have contributed to make the progress possible.

We will receive further information on this topic during the day. But even if we have been successful in this work, we shouldn’t stop here, we still have two more years of work up to 2015 and there are still many challenges that need to be address.

Let me highlight some of the areas that I believe should be address in our next activities. Broadband can help small and medium enterprises to compete and improve the productivity allowing them to create new jobs, offer value added services and access to new markets. This is an area that we will further explore during the upcoming two years and on this regard we would consider adding a new target for our 2013 Report to measure the access of small and medium enterprises to broadband.

The second element is the need to focus on groups of the population such as women and youth that still no fully benefiting from broadband. In Mexico we are working with these groups and providing them the tools and training to improve their education and bring them to labor market even at executive levels. A significant example of this area is the work we are going to help to avoid the lack of education and take people to the digital culture, with broadband we can positively engage our youth to contribute to the building of prosperous communities and eradicating the lack of education and opportunities that often result in despair and crime.

It is very important now to use the technology for education, it is not possible to multiplicate the university campus, the professors, the costs, the investments, and we need to move from the traditional education to the technological education and in this we need to be with broadband like a way to do that.

Finally, I like to continue emphasizing the need to promote local content and applications, to achieve this we need to work at many different levels including promoting and training of skilled professionals. Providing funds so developers can create innovative applications and showcasing best practices, like you remember best practices is one of the things that we’ve talked since the beginning and is very important to know what is done in countries and take the best practices of these countries and the experience they have to put at work in our countries. This is something that we are also doing in our country through the initiatives I presented in past meetings of the commission and I’ll be happy to present it directly to you in our next meeting of the commission to be held in march 2013 in Mexico, we’ll wait four you, we’ll be very happy to welcome you in Mexico for the next meeting in march next year.

Let me bring this challenges and ideas to the discussion, together we are building Broadband inclusion for all, in particular for those who need it most.

Thank you very much.


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