Bocar Ba, CEO of SAMENA Telecommunications Council chairs 7th CRO Meeting during ITU Telecom World 2016/11/20

Dubai, November 20, 2016 -- Chief Executive Officer of SAMENA Telecommunications Council, Bocar BA, chaired the 7th Meeting of the Private Sector Chief Regulatory Officers (CRO), held in Bangkok, Thailand, as a pre-event to the Telecom World 2016. The Meeting was attended by high-level industry executives from ITU-D Sector Members.

Mr. BA, who has been chairing this global private-sector representative forum of the ITU since the 4th Meeting, emphasized on the need for telecoms technology companies to actively use the CRO platform for having a meaningful dialogue with public-sector stakeholders and decision-makers, and for translating public and private-sector priorities into achievable goals. Bocar provided SAMENA regional operator perspectives and led a discussion on various industry matters.

Guided by key imperatives, which were finalized earlier under the chairmanship of Mr. BA and which are now driving the CRO's future endeavors, including on contributing to optimal enabling environment, promoting market access and infrastructure, and supporting to create added values of ICT applications, the participants of the 7th CRO Meeting agreed to focus on Digital Services, Data Regulation, Spectrum Management and Taxes, fees and charges, and Cross-sectoral Regulatory Collaboration. The private-sector representatives also highlighted the need to treat Data Regulation as a priority and proposed to invite data protection authorities together with telecom operators as a next step for physically driving cross-sectoral regulatory collaboration.

Bocar BA, as CEO of SAMENA Council, an industry association guided by an all-telecom operator Board of Directors, had previously reiterated the above core areas as major deciding factors for the ICT industry's future success and communicated the need to focus on these areas to regional regulatory bodies, remarked that "We are no longer a telecoms-only industry. For this reason, and many more, our focus has to shift to defining and addressing core issues that will impact the fulfillment of our digital agenda goals and the sustainability across all fronts. The 7th CRO Meeting has successfully built on our past discussions, and it is very encouraging to note that the issues of digital services, data regulation, spectrum, taxation, and cross-industry collaboration have received acceptance by the private-sector representatives as the defining areas for us to be thoroughly engaged with each other. I would like to congratulate the CRO participants for a very successful discussion, and anticipate that we will delve into these areas further deeply during the next Global Symposium for Regulators (GSR)."

The CRO Meeting brings together senior industry executives from private-sector entities that are members of the ITU-D. The primary objective of the CRO Meeting is to share experiences and exchange ideas on how to strengthen the private sector’s involvement and engagement in global, regional and national initiatives and to identify mechanisms to better foster an enabling environment for future development of the sector. Under the chairmanship of SAMENA Council's CEO, the CRO Meeting, since its 4th meeting, has been able to successful refine the objectives, the mechanisms, and initiatives to prospectively engage regulatory authorities around the world to conduct purposeful citizen-centric projects, including in the area of financial inclusion.