The Secretary General of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) - Houlin Zhao - has made an official visit to Portugal at the invitation of ANACOM. The programme for the visit, which took place on 24 and 25 January 2017, included meetings with the Portuguese President, members of the Government, ANACOM and a number of groups from the national communications sector with links to the ITU.
In a meeting with His Excellency the President of the Portuguese Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and with the Chair of the Board of Directors of ANACOM, Fátima Barros, Houlin Zhao acknowledged the great contribution that Portugal has made to the ITU since the Union's foundation. In particular, he highlighted the Union's activities in the area of cooperation with the information and communication technologies (ICT) sector in support of the sustainable development goals set out in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with special mention given to the coordination of projects in Portuguese-speaking countries. Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa called on the Secretary General to consider the ITU's involvement in the 2017 session of the Web Summit.
In a meeting with the Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education (MCTES), the ITU Secretary General was informed about some of the projects under development at MCTES where the ITU's active participation is considered important.
In a meeting with the Secretary of State for Infrastructure, there was discussion of topics related to the communications sector in Portugal, and the Secretary of State was invited to take part in the next ITU Telecom World, to be held in Busan, South Korea in September 2017.
In a working meeting at ANACOM, the ITU Secretary General was presented with an overview of the national telecoms sector, where some of the successful regulatory measures adopted by ANACOM were highlighted, together with the services made available online to facilitate and streamline ANACOM’s interaction with members of the sector, including end-users.
In meetings with operators and a large number of entities from the Portuguese ICT sector, the ITU Secretary general gave an overview of the ITU and outlined the great value that can come from active participation by these entities; he also heard directly about the expectations and challenges faced by the national ICT sector and how these might be addressed by the Union.
Finally, Houlin Zhao visited the exhibition "The Submarine Cable in a Sea of Connectivity" being held at Fundação Portuguesa das Comunicações (Portuguese Communications Foundation) and promoted by ANACOM, as well as other permanent exhibits at the Communications Museum.
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