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Cairo ICT celebrates 10 years of success
Published in Daily News Egypt on 13 - 12 - 2005

CAIRO: ICT 2006, scheduled for February 5-8, is set to attract many of the region's top players and the world's leaders in telecommunications, information technology, networking, computing and broadcast technology, as the event gears up for it's 10th round in Cairo.
Organizers are expecting a growth of 25 percent in both the number of exhibitors and visitors, compared to 2005, which had also seen a 36 percent growth rate from the previous round.
At a press conference in Dubai, Tradefairs International - the organizers of the leading event that covers Egypt, North Africa and Levant - said more than 150 international and regional exhibitors are taking part in the event taking place at the Cairo International Convention Centre.Attending the press conference were also some of the sponsors and participants in the event,including Etisalat, HP, Sun Microsystems and Canon.These companies and other participants are seeking stronger presence in the Egyptian and North African markets, which offer major opportunities at this stage.
"Cairo ICT 2006 will take place at an important timing as a new wave of liberalization is taking place in the entire region, resulting in new acquisitions,mergers, licensing and competition, said Ossama Kamal, managing director of Tradefairs International." Egypt alone will witness the liberalization of international gateways, fixed-line telephony and more,and Cairo ICT is an opportunity to be in the middle of all those events as they happen.
The 10th round of Cairo ICT is focusing in its forum on a number of crucial topics, including 3rd generation technology, ICT and media convergence, satellite technology, Voice over IP, Electronic Signature legislation, cashless societies, call centers and storage issues.
"The Forum agenda is rich with topics on the business side as well,where we shall continue adopting the last round's trend of bringing ICT professionals with those of the other sectors, such as transport, tourism,manufacturing and others said Amani Ghanem, a member of the organizing board."As the results of such activity in February 2005 were tremendous, with 11 ministers leading their industries into the debate with technology experts.
Cairo ICT 2006 is held under the auspices of Tarek Kamel, Minister of ICT and in cooperation with the IT Development Association (ITIDA), which has a mandate to spread awareness into the different sectors about the adoption of technology and through cooperation with different bodies. Such ideas were made public at the conclusion of the ninth round by Kamel as an initiative by the entire community, where ITIDA - led by its Chairman Eng. Mohamed Omran - takes a central role in promoting alongside the Industry Modernization Centre - headed by Helmy Abu el Eish.
Cairo ICT '06 sponsors include leading names: Telecom Egypt 'official Sponsor',MTC 'Platinum Sponsor', Flag Telecom 'VIP Sponsor', Nokia 'GSM Sponsor', Xerox 'Document Sponsor', Hi- Tek Nofal 'Wireless Sponsor', Ericsson '3G Sponsor', the National Post of Egypt 'Official Courier' and others to be announced soon.
Kamel said the growth in Cairo ICT is proportional with that of the sector, noted as one of the fastest growing, which is attracting investments that opened many opportunities for economic development in the Gulf at large and the UAE in particular.
"ICT companies played a major role in the transition that happened in Dubai along the past 15 or 20 years, resulting in what we see here today of unprecedented growth in all fields, an experience that is becoming contagious to the entire Arab region, he said.
Kamal noted that the new office in Dubai is a bridge between both countries for the exchange of expertise, cooperation and mutual understanding.
As Cairo ICT celebrates its 10th anniversary, many activities are set to take place within the coming event, opening vistas for increased cooperation in the region.The organizers have singled out the name of Mohamed Omran - chairman Etisalat - as one industry leader to be honored at Cairo ICT for his personal support and that of Etisalat to Cairo ICT since its inception in 1996 until to date.
Meanwhile, organizers spoke of Egypt's leading experience in liberalization of services,a model most of the Arab states are looking at and seeking to follow.
Many leading companies are asserting Egypt's role by establishing regional headquarters in the country's Smart Village, a showcase of its own for the entire Middle East. Cairo ICT, on its part, is the now an official spokesbody for the industry's aspirations and new trends in the years to come.
Cairo ICT '06 is witnessing a new upturn in form and content that will amaze exhibitors and visitors alike. "The presence of regional and international players from the telecom and IT fields in addition to the presence of new domains for the first time reflects the interest in the Cairo event and the presence of a new depth which is set to attract a new visitor profile from the entire region, said Sara Abodoma, ICT director.
The presence of operators such as Al Thuraya, Batelco, EMAK, Etisalat, Flag Telecom, Mobinil, MTC, Orascom Telecom, Telecom Egypt, Telecom Italia,Vodafone and others next to vendors as Alcatel, Cisco,Ericsson, Huwei, Juniper, Siemens and more is only the tip of an iceberg that speaks of the telecom weight of ICT.
Meanwhile, IT leaders such as HP, Canon, Globalis, Microsoft, SAP,Sun Microsystems, Xerox and others adds another dimension in that domain.
"Visitors from North Africa and parts of Africa were invited to attend the event as countries in these areas are way beyond saturation and are still looking for means to upgrade their infrastructures, says Abodoma.
"Businesspeople from Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, the Sudan and some African countries will be present to strike deals at Cairo ICT. Abodoma expects an increase of 25 percent in exhibitors as the conference center expanded the exhibition areas last year to encompass four halls, which organizers have divided into domains: Telecom, Networks, Hardware and Software.
Moreover, the Shoppers' area is prepared in a way that will attract more than 50,000 visitors on its own.
President Hosni Mubarak had opened the 2002 round, where he launched the Free Internet Initiative to be followed by other initiatives launched by Prime Minister Dr. Ahmed Nazif, such as 'the Affordable PC Initiative' and others that brought computing and IT to many Egyptian homes and small businesses.
Cairo ICT '06 will attract more than 1,500 developers from the region to attend the 3-day Microsoft Developers Conference, while more than 500 other developers will attend the Java Day organized by Sun Microsystems.
As to means of cooperation with the UAE, the organizers said their hearts and minds are open to all forms of cooperation to the interest of all parties.
"Cooperation, mergers or twining are not excluded at all, they said. Courtesy of

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