New technologies "provide smart solutions" to change the world

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World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (WTISD-2016)

New information and communication technologies (ICTs) "provide smart solutions" to help change the world for the better and foster sustainable development.

That's the message from UN chief Ban Ki-moon, marking World Telecommunication Day, on Tuesday.

He said the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) specifically single out the key role of ICTs in improving life for all, by 2030.

Dianne Penn has more.

The Secretary-General said that ICTs provide smart solutions to address key challenges posed by climate change, hunger and poverty, all important parts of the sustainable development agenda.

He called on leaders around the world to invest in young innovators in particular, saying that "as entrepreneurs they can pioneer transformative technology, create jobs and benefit whole economies."

He said the day provided an opportunity to harness the power of technology, to "create a better future for us all."

His message was echoed by the ITU Secretary-General, Houlin Zhao.

"Billions of people have now been brought into the information society, in a remarkably short period of time. Let's put our resources together in achieving sustainable development and delivering economic growth, social inclusion and environmental balance."

Mr Zhao stressed the need to focus on small local growth in the tech sector, to meet local needs.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 1'05"

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