Speech by Ethiopian Minister of Communication and Information Technology at the Second UPU Extraordinary Congress

04.09.2018 - Speech by Ubah Muhammed Hussien, Ethiopian Minister of Communication and Information Technology, at the opening ceremony of the Second UPU Extraordinary Congress, 3 September 2018

H.E. Dr. Mulatu Teshome,

President of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia,

Mr. Bishar A. Hussein, Director General of the International Bureau of the UPU,

Honourable Ministers,

Distinguished Delegates of Member States,

Dear participants,

Ladies and gentlemen,

It is a tremendous pleasure and an honor to be here with you at the opening of the Second Extraordinary UPU Congress. I wish to extend a warm welcome to all delegates of member states of UPU and participants of this valuable Congress. 

I am particularly delighted and proud that Ethiopia to be the first African country to host the Second Extraordinary UPU Congress in the historic city of Addis Ababa.

The Second Extraordinary UPU Congress is different in its nature and content, as the agendas at this event are most crucial for the sustainability of UPU and for the future of the Postal Sector as the whole. Therefore, I dare to say it will be a milestone and memorable event in the history of UPU.

Excellences,

Distinguished Delegates,

Invited Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

As you are well aware, this Congress will discuss on various topics:

·        The Reform of the Union,

·        Reform of the system applied to contributions by UPU member countries,

·        The Sustainability of the UPU Provident Scheme,

·        Implementation of the UPU's Integrated Product Plan and the Integrated Remuneration Plan,

Which are critical issues for ensuring the sustainability of the UPU.

Hence, as decision-makers of the world Posts, your direction, insight and guidance at this event today will be of great importance for the future of both our sector and our organization.

The Extraordinary Congress which is being held here in Addis Ababa emphasizes subjects that are aimed at reforming the UPU and the post business in general. We believe these reforms will not only create more efficiency in the Union but will also help best define postal products to align them with the expectation of customers and overall citizens of countries.

Excellences,

Distinguished Delegates and Invited Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

As you may recall, The 26th UPU Congress has approved the Istanbul World Postal Strategy that focuses on postal transformation which integrates the Sustainable Development Goals and sets the way forward for our organization towards inclusion, integration and innovation which definitely requires decisions on the aforementioned agendas and Reform in all aspects is thus a big agenda item in this Congress.

This Congress is being held at an appropriate time when the postal sector is facing unprecedented changes and increasing calls for the sector to transform and become more modernized, diversified, competitive, and responsive to customer expectations.

In line with this, The Postal Sector is one of the largest networks, it is contributing to the economic and social development by providing the most disadvantaged people access to a basic communication network and Financial Services.

It is also obvious that the postal sector is an integral part of the information and communication system and one of the basic utilities in the social and economic activity of any country. Therefore, Postal services must take advantage of the phenomenal changes in the communications industry as the information society takes over the way people communicate and do business.

Indeed, the present use of ICT in the postal sector in Africa is far behind other continents in providing electronic services. Thus, the postal sector in Africa requires more efforts to utilize ICT in rendering the postal services. It is my sincere belief that the outcomes of this congress will strengthen the UPU’s ongoing effort on digitalizing the industry.

Hon President

Excellences,

Distinguished Delegates and Invited Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The government of Ethiopia recognizes the vital role of the postal sector in the social well being of the people and its potential contribution to the economy as a whole. In this regard, the government has given due attention to the Postal Sector Reforms to grant the Ethiopian Postal Service adequate Management autonomy to ensure that it remains strong competitive enterprise. To this effect, the Government has taken measures by formulating integrated postal development strategy, issuing new Postal legislation and establishing a regulatory body. 

With reference to this, the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology, which I am leading, has been given the mandate to regulate the postal sector including the private courier service to promote the growth of the sector and also to ensure that all key stakeholders continue to play their respective roles in the economy. Towards this end,   a profound effort is being exerted to put in place a regulatory framework including licensing of operators, quality of services and protection of customers, etc. Consequently, the government action is supposed to enable the proper distribution of postal service to all part of the country to guarantee the citizen with affordable, reliable, and efficient postal services. On the postal operation side, more work is needed to upgrade the infrastructure to ensure that it responds to existing communication needs of our people.  In particular, the postal sector should accelerate the rollout of addresses to ensure that all households have access to addresses, thus empowering them to participate in economic activity.

Hon President

Excellences,

Distinguished Delegates and Invited Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The decisions and outcome of the Conference are expected to greatly strengthen and sustain the UPU and the postal sector as well as guide our work with the full support of UPU member states. Both as a country and a sector ministry dealing specifically with Communication and Information Technology, I am ready to continue our fruitful cooperation and work with UPU and all member states to ensure that we achieve our common goal.

In conclusion, allow me to thank the Universal Postal Union for choosing Ethiopia to host this crucial Congress, and once again, I wish that your deliberation will be successful.

I thank you for your attention.

Press release
 

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  1. Dirk at 19.01.2016
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