The International Telecommunication Union’s 20th Plenipotentiary Conference commenced.

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ITU’s 20th Plenipotentiary Conference (PP-18) opened today with a global call for the world to “act as one” to connect the world’s nearly four billion people who remain unconnected to the Internet.

The Plenipotentiary Conference is the highest decision-making body of ITU, the United Nations specialized agency for ICTs. Held every four years, the Conference is the key event at which ITU Member States build consensus on key international ICT issues, elect leaders for the Union’s top posts, and decide on a roadmap for ITU’s work over the next four-year period, including strategic and financial plans.

More than 2500 participants are attending PP-18, including heads of government, ministers and other delegates from most of ITU’s 193 Member States, as well as representatives from private companies, academic institutions and national, regional and international bodies. PP-18 takes place from 29 October to 16 November at the Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai, UAE.

On behalf of the Mongolian Government, delegations headed by Mr. Chinbat Baatarjav, Chairman of the Communications and Information Technology Authority and Mr. Chinzorig Gonchig, Chairman and CEO of the Communication Regulatory Commission are taking place in the Conference.The ITU PP-18 includes the election for the posts of ITU Secretary-General, Deputy Secretary-General, Director of ITU’s Radiocommunication Bureau, Director of ITU’s Telecommunication Standardization Bureau, Director of ITU’s Telecommunication Development Bureau, Radio Regulations Board (RRB) and the ITU Council.

As of 01 November, the winning candidates are:

  • Mr Houlin Zhao of China was re-elected to the post of ITU Secretary-General.
  • Mr Malcolm Johnson of the United Kingdom was re-elected to the post of ITU Deputy Secretary-General.
  • Dr Chaesub Lee of Republic of Korea was re-elected to the post of TSB Director.
  • A major stride was taken to bridge the digital gender divide, with the election of the first woman to an ITU leadership position in the Union’s 153-year history. Ms Doreen Bogdan-Martin of the United States was elected to the post of BDT Director.

It means, the 20th Plenipotentiary Conference of the ITU has elected the first woman to one of five top executive positions in the history of the organization.

These elections will be followed by the second round of election for the post of Director of ITU’s Radiocommunication Bureau, the RRB and the ITU Council.