Chairman of the PP-18:  Mr. Sultan Al Mesmar
Secretary General of the ITU, Mr. Houlin Zhao
Other Elected Officials of the ITU
Honorable Ministers
Heads of Delegations
Distinguished Delegates
Ladies and Gentlemen;

It is a distinct pleasure and honor for me and my delegation to be among you in this most modern city, Dubai to participate in Plenipotentiary Conference 2018. 

I want to first thank and applaud the host country – the United Arab Emirates and the Emirate and City of Dubai- for their gracious and warm welcome. 

I would also like to recognize the ITU leadership led by Mr. Houlin Zhao who have been preparing for this event along with the host country since PP-14. The Host Country and the ITU leadership, together, made this impressive gathering very successful. They have done a tremendous job and deserve our gratitude and applause.

Ladies and Gentlemen

We are gathered here to take stock and recommit to our union’s shared commitments in the development of ICTs across the World. We seek to develop and promote ICTs because we collectively understand its essential contributions to the betterment of human development and progress. I would not dwell on enumerating or describing the role and benefits of ICTs because we all understand that. However, we believe a lot of work needs to be done to ensure that the development of ICTs lead to shared prosperity because in a world of haves and have nots, inequities breed instability - the ramification of which will affect us all.

As we continue our efforts towards the implementation of the Connect 2020 Agenda, WSIS Action Lines, Sustainable Development Goals, and forthcoming ITU 2020-2023 Strategic Plan, it is worth reminding ourselves the transformational technological changes upon us and how we can harness the positive aspects of new and emerging technologies while we put in place policies and mechanisms that mitigate the risks inherent in a connected world.

For some, the next big thing is harnessing the promise of the technologies that underpin the 4thth Industrial Revolution, while others, my country included, are concerned about being left behind during a period of tremendous, rapid technological transformation.  

Recognizing the important role of government policy and regulatory interventions in mitigating market inefficiencies, our government undertook set of policies based on our National Development Plan that led to the passage of a Communication Law and created an independent regulatory authority with the aim of creating a conducive environment for investment in infrastructure and access, which we view as essential foundational imperatives. Our government recognizes that ICTs form the bedrock of socio-economic development and good governance.

Therefore, we are committed to creating opportunities through the development of ICTs for our people that would allow them to participate in the global economy. 

However, Somalia and many other developing countries cannot overcome alone the many challenges their societies face in hyper-competitive global technological order. We believe it is in the best interest of developed and less developed countries alike to cooperate and collaborate while we recommit to our shared goals in the ITU Strategic Plan, WSIS Action Lines, and Sustainable Development Goals. 

Finally Somalia has resubmitted for adoption during PP-18 Resolution 160 - “Assistance to Somalia” which has been endorsed by the Arab and Africa Regions in their Common Proposals. We respectfully ask all member states to support this Resolution so that Somalia can rebuild its ICT infrastructure and capacities. Somalia is committed to support the activities of the ITU and will cooperate and collaborate with fellow member states to advance the global ICT Agenda. We hope that those whom have experiences, knowledge and expertise will share for the benefit of all.

Shukran, Thank you for your attention