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21-23 February 2000

EASTERN EUROPE GEARS UP FOR IMT-2000 - UMTS Forum participates in ITU seminar for 20 Eastern European, Baltic and Commonwealth of Independent States administrations

Warsaw, Poland, 21-23 February 2000: [Cross-industry group] The UMTS Forum has welcomed this week the initiative by the ITU and the Polish government and administration to host a unique seminar on IMT-2000 for the benefit of the Eastern European, Baltic and C.I.S. regions. Taking place in Warsaw, the session served to raise awareness and answer administrators’ questions about IMT-2000, with a special focus on the far-reaching socio-economic opportunities offered by third-generation mobile communications networks and the various proposals for the identification of additional spectrum.

Top Polish ministerial officials - as well as operators, universities and other industry representatives - are attending the meeting alongside 20 administrators from the region to hear presentations on technical standards, spectrum and regulatory issues from speakers representing The ITU, CEPT, CITEL APT, ERO, APG WRC, The UMTS Forum, UWCC, Japan, Korea, The Netherlands, Poland and the USA, as well as manufacturers and an operator.

UMTS Forum Vice Chairman Josef Huber’s presentation focused on the future vision of IMT-2000 and the services that it will enable. In his role as CEPT co-ordinator for IMT-2000 at WRC-2000, the UMTS Forum’s Spectrum Aspects Group Chairman Tim Hewitt presented a summary of the comprehensive CEPT preparations for WRC-2000 and the recently agreed European Common Proposals aimed at identifying sufficient globally-harmonised radio spectrum to support the future global mass market for mobile multimedia services. The Forum’s Regulatory Aspects Group Thomas Sidenbladh addressed the seminar on the importance of free global circulation of IMT-2000 terminals.

The event was also addressed by Sabah Towaiji from the Canadian Administration, who presented the still-developing CITEL views and drew attention to the dramatic growth and increase in global mobile penetration rates and the requirement for global additional spectrum to be identified at the forthcoming WRC.

"With the WRC-2000 in Istanbul fast approaching, this seminar serves as an invaluable opportunity for administrators from the Eastern European, Baltic States and Commonwealth of Independent States to learn more about IMT-2000 at first hand", said Stephen Blust, chairman of the new ITU Working Party 8F on IMT-2000. "We are indebted to the ITU for promoting this enormously valuable event that will undoubtedly play a key role in helping administrators from the regions to shape their understanding and enthusiasm for IMT-2000."

Mr. Houlin Zhao, director of the ITU/TSB, said: "The co-operation of industry forums and partnerships with the ITU has been an essential element in the successful development of IMT-2000. It is essential that the message of IMT-2000 is spread throughout the world and events such as this seminar are part of this process".

In his opening remarks to the meeting, The Minister of Posts and Telecommunications H.E. Mr. Srebro noted that the successful deployment of IMT-2000 in Poland is vital for the future development of Polish telecommunications market and that Poland was thus pleased to host this ITU seminar.

The UMTS Forum has already highlighted the need for a minimum of 160MHz of additional globally-identified spectrum to meet future market needs for the terrestrial element of IMT-2000, and has identified 2520-2670MHz as the most suitable candidate to provide the majority of this additional spectrum needed. The Forum was very pleased to note that important new synergies were now evident within the common views of the regional organisations present at the ITU Seminar.



 
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