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Minister of ICT Inaugurates the Regional Workshop on ICT Indicators: from Policy & Strategy to Impact & Vice Versa Sharm-El-Sheikh, 8 June 2012

Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Dr. Mohamed Salem inaugurated today the Regional Workshop on ICT Indicators: from policy & strategy to impact & vice versa. The workshop measures the impact of the growth indicators of the ICT sector on the Arab economies.
The workshop held during 8 – 9 June is organized by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), in cooperation with the regional office of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in Cairo.
The workshop comes within the framework of supporting the ongoing partnership between MCIT and ITU aiming at benefiting from the pioneering Egyptian expertise in integrating IT tools and applications into other sectors of the State like health, education and others.
This integration has led to the effective advancement and development of these sectors, positively reflecting on the growth of the national economy in Egypt.
A group of ICT experts from 15 Arab countries are among the attendees of the workshop. A number of experts in ICT international organizations such as the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Bank (WB), ESCWA, and some experts of ITU regional office in Cairo were also present.
In his speech, Dr. Salem asserts the Ministry strong commitment to develop the ICT sector order. The sector has been known as an effective sector in the Egyptian economy. It has been able to maintain its positive growth rates, he adds.
Dr. Salem says that the Egyptian ICT sector secured the second position among the fastest growing economic sectors in 2010/2011 with 6.7% growth rate, falling second place behind Suez Canal, whose growth rates registered 11.5% in the same year.
Moreover, His Excellency, Dr. Salem denotes that the Egyptian ICT sector procures a total of 36.6 billion Egyptian pounds this year, a 3% of the Egyptian GDP, proving that it has all potentials it needs to overcome obstacles and crises, whether national or international.
In the third quarter of the fiscal year 2011/2012, ICT sector registered a growth rate of about 9%, a notable surge in comparison with 3.9% in the second quarter of the same fiscal year, Dr. Salem states.
In the same time, forecasts indicate increasing growth rates ending up between 10 - 11% by the end of the fiscal year 2011/2012. This only confirms the capability of the sector to lead the Egyptian economy growth in the coming few years, especially in the increasing presence of freedoms and protecting intellectual property rights in this sector, Dr. Salem concludes.
During the workshop sessions, new developments in the field of ICT indicators and methodologies of measuring the growth effect of these indicators on the economic, social and political advancement are subject of discussion.
Additionally, participants at the workshop review a number of selected experiments in applying some ICT policies and strategies and its measurement criteria.
By the end of the events of day one, Dr. Salem launches the regional capacity building project for the Arab countries in the field of measuring the ICT impact on the economic growth.
The project is a joint cooperation between MCIT and the regional office of ITU which strongly supports this project on the basis of its confidence in Egypt’s ability and expertise in this field.
Furthermore, this new project presents the opportunity to exchange expertise among Arab countries on one side, and Arab countries and international organizations, participating in the field of gauging ICT indicators, on the other side.
In addition, the project due to last till 2014 assists in liaising the expertise with various strategies and policies, as well as emphasizing the importance of measuring ICT economic, political and social effects.
The workshop concludes by reviewing the roadmap towards devising executive mechanisms to the phases of the project of measuring the ICT impact on the national economy, and on the political changes the region is currently witnessing.
As the Egyptian experience represents a role model for other Arab countries in the field of ICT, the regional office of ITU relies on the distinguished Egyptian expertise, and works on exchanging this expertise among neighboring Arab countries, thus improving standards and statistics of ICT indicators in these countries.

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