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UK Government Launch Bid for Seat on the UN Telecoms Council

Wednesday, November 10th, 2021 (11:00 am) - Score 840
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The UK Government will today launch its election manifesto as part of efforts to secure a seat on the governing council of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), which will give it more of a say in future standards (broadband, satellite technologies etc.) and the allocation of global spectrum (mobile etc.) etc.

As part of the Western European Regional Group (B), the United Kingdom will find itself competing for one of eight seats currently held by France, Italy, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Spain, Switzerland and Turkey. But there are some good reasons why the UK might seek such a seat.

For example, several senior Government MPs have recently called for a new approach to the development of future 6G based mobile broadband technologies, which they would like to see aiming to prioritise societal benefits over the usual focus on delivering “ever higher data [speeds] and ever higher spectrum bands” (here).

The government’s part ownership of OneWeb’s constellation of LEO broadband satellites, as well as any related aspirations to add global positioning and navigation features to future platforms, may be another factor. The ITU is responsible for helping to agree crucial details about the orbits of such satellite platforms and constellations.

Being a member of the ITU’s governing council would bolster the UK’s efforts to tackle the growing demand for radio spectrum caused by the growth of new wireless technologies and closing the global digital divide by widening access to information and communication technologies,” said the announcement.

Chris Philp, Minister for Tech and Digital Economy, said:

“We are delighted to be launching our manifesto today as part of our bid for a seat at the International Telecommunication Union’s governing council.

ITU’s mission to connect the world has never been more important and we share its ambition to tackle the sector’s biggest challenges, such as closing the digital divide.

The UK, with its thriving tech sector and world-leading academic expertise, has a great deal to offer.”

The election itself will take place in the first week of the ITU’s Plenipotentiary Conference at the end of September 2022. In order to be elected for a four-year term, the UK will need to secure enough votes from all 193 ITU Member States, which is usually conducted through a single round of voting.

Chris Philp will launch the UK’s election manifesto at events in Geneva on Wednesday, attended by ambassadors and other stakeholders.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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