GSMA, ITU, ICANN and ISOC Asia-Pacific Share Reports and Findings At Digital Societies Policy Forum in Bangkok

Bangkok: New research reports produced by the GSMA, International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and the Internet Society (iSOC) demonstrate that the development of digital societies have the potential to help solve key challenges faced by Asian countries. These challenges range from access to essential services and enhanced disaster management to improvement in service delivery and the efficient utilisation of limited resources.

The reports, developed independently by each organisation, share common conclusions and recommendations on the potential of digital and mobile technology to advance national economies and markets, as well as overcome challenges arising from rapid population growth and increasing rural-urban migration faced by Asian countries. These findings were shared at the ‘GSMA-ITU Digital Societies Policy Forum 2015,’ which took place today at the Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit in Bangkok.

"With the development of high-speed mobile broadband technologies and the increasing availability and affordability of smartphones, mobile technology is well-suited to deliver the required connectivity and content for a digital society," said Chris Zull, the GSMA’s Spectrum Director for Asia. "Today’s wireless networks are able to cover a wide area with greater efficiency at lower costs than many other technologies, particularly in emerging countries with underdeveloped fixed network infrastructure and low levels of urbanisation."

Inter-organisation Cooperation and Collaboration
The ‘GSMA-ITU Digital Societies Policy Forum 2015’ is one of the first events jointly organised by the GSMA and ITU, and supported by ICANN and iSOC. It assembled over 100 policymakers, regulators, industry and other stakeholders from the ICT sector to discuss issues related to digital societies in the Asia-Pacific region, as well as examine the emerging national plans to build digital societies, framed around these new research reports and policies. The Forum also focused on the role of spectrum policy and licensing for mobile broadband, where experts from various countries shared their views on global trends in technologies and spectrum demands, as well as challenges and opportunities in pathways towards building digital societies throughout this diverse region.

The Digital Societies Policy Forum brings together key stakeholders, including governments and operators, to work on ensuring that technology and infrastructure, particularly mobile infrastructure, in a country meets the demands of a digital society. Achieving success requires access to adequate spectrum and tax regimes that incent investment, as well as the creation of awareness-building campaigns for digital services, which should be easy to use and accessible via multiple channels and languages. Six countries in the region – Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan and Thailand – are participating in digital society initiatives, and Thailand is the first host of the Forum.


Note to Editors:
To download the new GSMA report ‘Building Digital Societies in Asia’ please visit:

About the GSMA
The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide, uniting nearly 800 operators with more than 250 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset and device makers, software companies, equipment providers and Internet companies, as well as organisations in adjacent industry sectors. The GSMA also produces industry-leading events such as Mobile World Congress, Mobile World Congress Shanghai and the Mobile 360 Series conferences.

For more information, please visit the GSMA corporate website at Follow the GSMA on Twitter: @GSMA.

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