Digital broadcasting to benefit GCC

DUBAI — The 22nd meeting of Telecommunications, Information Technology and Post GCC Ministers concluded on Wednesday in Abu Dhabi. The meeting convened from June 20-22 and was headed by Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, UAE Minister of Economy.

The meeting was attended by ministers and heads of delegations from the GCC countries; Mohamed Jamil bin Ahmed Mulla, Minister of Communications and Information Technology, head of Saudi Delegation; Ahmed bin Mohammed Salem Alaftysi, Minister of Transport and Communications, Head of Omani delegation; Abdul Mohsen Hassan Mazeedi, Secretary of the Ministry of Transportation, head of the Kuwaiti delegation; Shaikh Badr bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Acting Secretary of the Ministry of Communications, head of the Bahraini delegation; Dr Hassa Sultan Al Jaber, Secretary-General of the Supreme Council for Communications and Information Technology, head of the Qatari delegation; and Dr Abdullah bin Juma Al Shibli, Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Affairs, head of the General Secretariat of the GCC countries delegation.

The UAE delegation was led by Mohamed Nasser Al Ghanim, Director-General of the TRA and the head of the UAE delegation.

In his opening speech Al Mansouri said: “Our agenda includes the topic of lowering the roaming rates between GCC countries in accordance with the decision of the recent Ministerial Committee. As well as another topic on the plan of the GCC countries to move from analogue to digital broadcasting, and the great benefit for the GCC from such a transition.”

With regard to the Post sector, there are also many important topics, of which the GCC preparations for the next international Post Conference to be held in Qatar are the most significant. In addition to the Bill of a United (System) in the GCC, that will organise the work and activities of private companies working in the field of courier, freight and parcels,” he added.

During the meeting number of issues were approved such as: the Supreme Council Resolution at its 30th session for enhancing the investments environment among GCC countries, and the shift from the 4th version (IPV4) to the 6th version (IPV6) of the Internet Protocol.

The meeting also approved the foundations of the transition from analog to digital television broadcasting. In terms of international roaming charges, GCC Ministers decided to adhere to the Ministerial resolution made at the 19th meeting which stated that the GCC countries will move the implementation of the second phase mentioned in the recommendations of the second meeting of the roaming working group which determined the completion of it on the June 8.

The GCC Telecommunications Regulatory Authorities will inform the operators immediately after this meeting to implement the resolution and move to the second phase.

As for the Post sector, they emphasised the importance of the continued collective participation of the GCC in the international stamps exhibitions, due to the remarkable success of the previous participations in highlighting the cultural and modern renaissance experienced by the GCC at this time.

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