In New York, the Director-General Makes the Case for Innovation for Sustainable Development at ITU Anniversary

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© UNESCO

On 26 September, UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova, highlighted the need for innovation to craft the solutions required for taking forward the new 2030 agend‎a, on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

Irina Bokova underlined the importance of innovative solutions, including ICTS, to eradicate poverty, to tackle climate change, to reduce risks, to promote energy and water security, in order to strengthen inclusion.

On this occasion, ICTs for Sustainable Development Awards were presented by ITU to a wide range of leaders -- including HE Prince Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Bahrain, HE Sheikh Hasina, Prime Minister of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, HE Mr Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama, Prime Minister of the Republic of Fiji, HE Mr Ali Bongo Ondimba, President of the Gabonese Republic, HE Mr Uhuru Kenyatta, President of the Republic of Kenya, HE Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia, HE Mr Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda, HE General Prayuth Chan-ocha, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand, and HE Mr Meltek Sato Kilman Livtuvanu, Prime Minister of the Republic of Vanuatu.

The Director-General underscored that “to move forward, we must harness every accelerator of development, every multiplier of poverty eradication – this is the importance of new technologies. We must nurture greatest renewable energy we have, that of human ingenuity.”

"Empowering girls and women is essential to the success of the historic 2030 Agenda," said Irina Bokova.

“This is why education, science education and the world of the Global STEM Alliance, are so important,” she declared, adding that this is about “bridging divides and eradicating poverty." 

The Director-General thanked Mr Houlin Zhao for his leadership in taking forward the International Telecommunication Union at a time when its role has never been so important.