Context: Prime Minister of India will inaugurate the new International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Area Office and Innovation Centre in India.
About International Telecommunication Union (ITU):
- It is a specialized agency of the United Nations that focuses on information and communication technologies (ICTs).
- ITU was established in 1865 to enhance global connectivity in communication networks.
- The organization is responsible for managing the allocation of global radio spectrum and satellite orbits, as well as developing technical standards that enable seamless interconnectivity among networks and technologies.
- Membership of ITU is open to all member states of the United Nations.
- There are currently 193 member states of the ITU, including all UN member states except the Republic of Palau.
- Its headquarters is based in Geneva, Switzerland.
Reports/Publications of ITU:
- ICT Development Index
- Global ICT Regulatory Outlook 2020
- Global Cyber Security Index
- Global e – Waste Monitor (along with United Nations University & International Solid Waste Association (ISWA)
India & ITU:
- India has been an active member of the ITU since 1869, earnestly supporting the development and propagation of telecom in the global community of nations.
- The country has been a regular member of the ITU Council since 1952, and has played an important role in harmonizing the contributions of member States from the region, always respecting the principles of equality and consensus-building.
- India had been elected as a Member of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Council for 4-year term (2019-2022).
- India signed Host Country Agreement with the International Telecommunication Union for establishment of Area Office & Innovation Centre at New Delhi (March 2022). The Host Country Agreement provides the legal and financial framework for establishment and operations of the Area Office.
- The Area Office and Innovation Centre of ITU at New Delhi is expected to serve South Asian countries namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Iran, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka and India.