Page 11 - SAMENA Trends - June-August 2021
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               Going forward, planning the future with “emergency and preparedness”
               As the industry envisions the post-pandemic development of ICT, participants expressed their eagerness
               to support the ITU mission and efforts to boost connectivity and prepare for future emergencies.

               Ms. Amy Alvarez, AVP of International External & Regulatory Affairs at AT&T and Vice-Chair of IAGDI-CRO,
               highlighted the necessity to also drive changes from the demand side. Although great efforts had been made
               to enrich the supply of connectivity and ICT applications, stimulation from the demand side would lead to
               improved outcomes. This could involve expanding digital skills trainings, making locally-relevant content
               and services available online, and promoting access to and ownership of devices. The complementary
               efforts in the demand and the supply side would create a win-win situation for the people, the government,
               and the industry.
               COVID-19 brings long-term transformation in ICT rather than a temporary disruption. As the  industry
               prepares for the post-COVID world, it would be helpful to take on a mindset of changes. Ms. Aarti Holla,
               Secretary-General of ESOA, warned the governments as well as the private sector to hold back on their
               excitement in the transitioning phase once we step out of the pandemic period. Being able to carefully
               plan the way forward would be a luxury that must be seized.

               Collective efforts will continue to be indispensable for issues such as cybersecurity, cross border data
               transmission, and regulations of emerging technologies. Ms. Oyeronke Oyetunde,  General Manager
               of  Regulatory  Affairs  at  MTN  Group  Management  Services  and  Vice-Chair  of  IAGDI-CRO,  proposed
               the harmonization of data sovereignty as an alternative approach to data localization. While enabling
               harmonization of data sovereignty is part of  lifting the hurdles to drive greater scale of digital
               transformation, the creation of a level playing ground would facilitate long-term industry development
               and drive conversations further.

                                                               In his closing remarks, Mr. Cosmas Zavazava, Chief
                                                               of the Partnerships for Digital Development
                                                               Department, BDT, expressed the value ITU-D holds
                                                               in the voice of the industry and the private sector.
                                                               He believes that the progress of the IAGDI-CRO
                                                               group, and all the ITU-D members, could lead to
                                                               progress in advancing sustainable connectivity.


               IAGDI-CRO Governance

                   Mr. Bocar BA, Chairman        Ms. Amy Alvarez, Vice-Chair  Ms. Oyeronke Oyetunde, Vice-Chair
                       CEO, SAMENA               AVP - International External &   General Manager: Regulatory Affairs,
                 Telecommunications Council        Regulatory Affairs, AT&T   MTN Group Management Services

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