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Metu@ Internet Project Enters New Phase

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PAPE'ETE (OFO): An ambitious Internet dissemination project code-named "metu@" will enter its second year of existence with a three-day forum focusing on how French Polynesia can evolve with the input of new information technologies, RFO radio reports.

The meeting, which starts on Wednesday, revolves around the theme "Evolution of French Polynesian society on the wake of the third millennium" and will gather top officials, professionals and academics from French Polynesia, metropolitan France, Mauritius and Canada's French-speaking Quebec province.

"Last year, we had put an emphasis on the new technologies and their implications for providing services, mainly in administration, and what they contained, especially on the Internet. Today, it is more about society, its evolution regarding these new multimedia and Internet technologies", forum organiser Jean-Claude Teriierooiterai said.

"We will have specialists coming to share their experiences, for instance on the 'start-up' concept, also the human resources evolution within the

companies. So this interests business managers, but also those working in companies".

The forum will be officially opened by French Polynesia's President Gaston Flosse, who initiated the ambitious "metu@" project two years ago, saying this could help break down the isolation of a territory totalling a surface equivalent to that of Europe.

Flosse's Vice-President Edouard Fritch (who is also in charge of archipelagos development, Posts and Telecommunications), was also to deliver an address.

Metu@ aims at improving access to Internet and new information and communication technologies to the general public, especially in remote islands of French Polynesia.

The French territory, has started implementing the project with public Internet and computer stations, possibly video conferencing public access points in some points of the archipelago.

IT trainers, recruited in the young generations as part of a partnership

project with the local ministry of youth, are currently being trained to

assist the general public in using the Metu@ "fares" (houses).

During the forum, round tables and panel discussions are to deal each day with such issues as "Society in he 21st century", "Employment and job evolution", "A new economy" (e-commerce, world trade, a new breed of

companies, legal implications) and "The Society of Knowledge".

+++niuswire


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