18 May 2023
ITU Celebrates WTISD 2023

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is celebrating World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2023 (WTISD), on May 17, under the theme "Empowering the least developed countries (LDCs) through ICTs."

On WTIDS, ITU calls on the public and private sectors to make pledges for universal connectivity and digital transformation in LDCs through its Partner2Connect Digital Coalition which focuses on hardest-to-connect communities.

LDCs are the world’s greatest untapped resource, whose needs must be addressed to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). About one-third of the 2.7 billion people who remain unconnected to the Internet are in the 46 LDCs. Investment in these countries can drive sustainable growth for generations.

WTISD has been celebrated annually every 17 May since 1969 to mark the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention and the founding of ITU in 1865. It was instituted by the Plenipotentiary Conference in 1073. The purpose of WTISD is to help raise awareness of the challenges and successes of LDCs on social media.

In 2005, the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) called upon the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) to declare May 17 as World Information Society Day, to focus on the importance of ICT and the wide range of issues related to the Information Society raised by WSIS. The UNGA adopted a resolution in March 2006, stipulating that World Information Society Day shall be celebrated annually on May 17. In November 2006, the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference decided to celebrate both events on May 17 as WTISD.
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