Speaking at a high-level meeting of ministers on the eve of the 10th Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Brazil, Ilham Habibie, Chair of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) initiative Business Action to Support the Information Society (BASIS), welcomed strong support expressed by many governments and other Internet stakeholders for a continuation of the Forum’s unique and inclusive approach to Internet governance.
Speaking on behalf of global business, Mr Habibie called on all stakeholders to use the significant 2015 milestone to refocus efforts towards the development aspirations set down when the Forum was conceived 10 years ago.
“Over 10 years the IGF has evolved into an increasingly well-formatted opportunity to draw in diverse views,” Mr Habibie said. “It is important that we continue to invest in the value that the IGF delivers and build on its strengths. This includes augmenting the voice of stakeholders from developing economies and strengthening the nascent links between this annual event and regional IGFs to leverage regional insight and emerging issues to make this Forum more in tune and more relevant than ever.”
Mr Habibie urged participants to use the four-day forum to pool expertise and consider the evolution of the Internet in relation to advancing the United Nations’ newly launched Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
“Attainment of all 17 goals will rely, in varying degrees – on ICTs both connected over the Internet and in back end-systems,” said Mr Habibie who underscored the contribution of the private sector – as a major investor and innovator – to the transformation of the Internet from an information exchange network to the platform for sustainable social and economic development it is today.
With continuing cooperation and the right policy environment, we can do much more to address remaining gaps and connect the next billion, and in the end, in a hopefully not-too-distant future, everyone on the planet.
“Business engagement with other stakeholders is prerequisite to advance the UN goals in an economically viable manner. With continuing cooperation and the right policy environment, we can do much more to address remaining gaps and connect the next billion, and in the end, in a hopefully not-too-distant future, everyone on the planet.”
The UN-linked 10th Internet Governance Forum officially begins today in João Pessoa, Brazil bringing together the global Internet governance community for candid and open discussion on the future governance of the Internet. The meeting takes place just weeks before a 10-year review of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) concludes at a two-day meeting of the UN General Assembly in New York.
Through its Business Action to Support the Information Society (BASIS) initiative, ICC works to mobilize business participation at the IGF, demonstrating the value of the private sector’s role and engagement in policy discussions and ensuring that governance of the Internet remains open, secure, stable and inclusive.