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Leading Regional Ict Conference Kicks Off

PacINET 2008 NEWS:

Leading Regional Ict Conference Kicks Off In Rarotonga
Monday 1st September 2008

Regional and international Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) experts and practitioners convene this week in Rarotonga, Cook Islands, for PacINET 2008.

PacINET is the regional conference for practitioners, developers, researchers and those interested in ICT from all sectors to exchange information on system design, enabling technologies and anecdotal experiences in the Pacific Islands.

The conference is being held at the National Auditorium in Avarua, Rarotonga from 1-5th September 2008.

The meeting is organised by the Pacific Islands Chapter of the Internet Society (PICISOC) Cook Islands contingent.

PICISOC is an active chapter of Internet Society (ISOC), covering 22 Pacific island states and territories with a membership of over 500 individuals across the region. ISOC is a professional membership organisation with around 100 organisational and over 26,000 individual members in more than 180 countries.

In opening the meeting this morning, Prime Minister of the Cook Islands, Hon. Jim Marurai, recognised the importance of ICT.

"We are currently developing an ICT policy driven by the priority to establish a knowledge-based society, and a mission toward sustained long-term social, cultural and economic development."

Hon. Marurai added the goal was to make ICT a dynamic sector in itself, while supporting the development of other sectors of the Cook Islands economy, expanding a better educated workforce and forging a stronger integration with the global economy through ICT initiatives.

"This gathering will undoubtedly serve our collective efforts as a region, in working together more closely and sharing our experiences."

Key issues to be discussed at PacINET 2008 include, among others, Internet governance, security, accessibility, IPv6 and ICT in education.

President of PICISOC and ICT Expert from the Pacific Islands Applied Geoscience Commission (SOPAC), Mr Franck Martin, highlighted the importance of linking global ICT trends to Pacific Island Countries' unique needs.

"This year we will be focusing on 'ICT for quality of life', which is the theme of this conference," said Mr Martin. "This includes considering issues such as Internet user trust and identity in the Pacific, so we have a safe Internet where our individual freedoms are protected."

PacINET 2008 is also the Annual General Meeting of PICISOC.

(Ends)

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