CASABLANCA, June 11, 2008 - Cisco announced today that as part of strategic agreement, Cisco's global consulting arm, the Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) will work closely with the Government of Morocco to analyze and define a set of strategic actions and initiatives to help accelerate the penetration of nation-wide broadband connectivity across the Kingdom.
His Excellency Mr Ahmed Chami, minister of Trade, Industry and New Technologies represented the Moroccan government at a ceremony to launch this joint initiative also attended by senior officials and dignitaries from the Moroccan government and delegates from Cisco led by Yvon Le Roux, vice president, for Cisco's Africa and Levant region.
"We have a realistic appreciation for what information and communications technology can and cannot do for our country and communities. We are looking to bolster public confidence in the technology path we are taking," His Excellency commented. "Technology should be applied with relevance to the needs of people and the organizations that serve them. To do this the community infrastructure needs to be stronger, highly effective and more sustainable to exploit the potential benefits of broadband services to help achieve better outcomes."
His Excellency further elaborated that ICT initiatives must be thought through logically as community access projects providing computers and connections in rural locations do not become self-sustaining if local people are not equipped with the knowledge to use the services.
"There is a need for a holistic approach to cover the range of issues to create effective and sustainable uses for technology that are integrated into local society. Cisco's successes globally will be instrumental to the success of Morocco's broadband strategy," added His Excellency.
"In the past Governments have always tried to ensure that all citizens have access to basic services and utilities such as electricity, water and transport; today this means network connectivity. A robust information infrastructure helps citizens as well as businesses prosper and is instrumental in attracting the right personnel, technology and service industries that create today's thriving economies," said Abderrahmane Mounir, Cisco general manager in Morocco.
Cisco's engagement with the Moroccan government will help to evaluate the current situation of broadband connectivity in Morocco and identify the main hurdles to accelerate its penetration in all segments. The initial work will focus on assessing, analyzing, sharing of best-practices and aligning the national ICT strategy to the Kingdom's socio-economic development agenda in order to build towards this goal. "Many governments around the world are realizing that providing nation wide broadband infrastructure can put their countries on the map as a forward-looking, innovation-driven nation," said Peter Ford, Head of Service Provider for IBSG Emerging Markets at Cisco.
There are many success stories examples globally than can demonstrate how the provision of broadband connections to all businesses and homes throughout a country has contributed to economic prosperity by boosting the population's IT literacy rate. This can benefit even geographically remote areas, not only by providing connectivity to remote public service points such as schools, medical facilities and community centers, but also by creating more business opportunities to remote cities and villages across the country.
Note to Editors
The Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG), the global strategic consulting arm of Cisco, helps Global Fortune 500 companies and leading public organizations improve the customer experience and increase revenue growth by transforming the way they do business. IBSG designs innovative business processes and then integrates advanced technologies into visionary roadmaps that optimize business results and increase efficiency.
In Emerging Markets, Cisco IBSG works with leaders of federal and regional government, businesses, communities, multilateral institutions and local NGOs to turn their technology investments into strategic national assets. Serving as trusted advisors in assignments spanning broadband connectivity, digital inclusion, smart communities and business productivity, Cisco IBSG aligns ICT to support socioeconomic development in Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa, Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States.
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