I’m currently attending the annual Korea-Australia-New Zealand (KANZ) Broadband Summit in Hobart, and tomorrow morning will be giving the breakfast address.I’ll be blogging selectively throughout the day, and it is also being streamed live.
After a brief welcoming address from Professor Mike Miller, emeritus professor at the University of South Australia, the opening speech was given by Australia’s Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy. The Senator talked about the long history of friendship between Australia, New Zealand and Korea, and the partnerships that have been formed, including one between Korea and CSIRO. The Australian animation company Crewjo also got a mention for its alliance with a Korean company for the production of educational content. He also talked about the partnership between Australia and New Zealand to reduce trans-Tasman mobile roaming charges.
He also talked about the start differences in the deployment of broadband between the three counties – Australia and New Zealand being in the middle of their next-generation broadband deployments, while Korea is recognised as a world leader in broadband. He said it was fitting that the conference be held in Tasmania, where the National Broadband Network first went live.
he also talked about how Australia’s productivity performance has slowed to 1.4 percent, from almost double that in the previous decade.
“Ubiquitous high speed broadband is the key to the nation’s economic and social future, and the key to participating in the digital economy,” he said. “(High-speed broadband) drives productivity. It will connect Australians to each other, and the world.”
His address was followed by one from Mr See Joong Choi, the chairman, Korean Communications Commission, who talked about the changes the have occurred in Korea as a result of the introduction of broadband technology into Korea.
“Our three nations have a common goal of pursuing economic development and the advance of digital culture with high-speed broadband infrastructure,” he said. “The Korean government has established three mid to long term development projects since 1995 to roll out an ultra-fast broadband network. These network upgrading projects will not only support the expansion of a smart society, but lay the foundation for the development of a digital economy.”
He also discussed the idea that unless Korea develops a culture of being able to capture the benefits of these network developments – it is the applications and services that are vital, and they must be the focus of ongoing development. Society must als be educated as to the issues of cyber-safety as more and more of its actions move online. Finally, he talked about the role that broadband can play in reducing greenhouse emissions through the use of ICT for energy saving activities, particularly the use of cloud computing.
The final opening address was given by Hon. Steven Joyce, the New Zealand Minister for Communications and Information Technology. Mr Joyce talked about New Zealand’s Ultra-Fast Broadband network deployment, which is occurring in partnership with the private sector and aims to deliver high speed broadband to 75 percent of the population by 2019. The country is also deploying a rural network, the Rural Broadband Initiative, for high-speed access in regional areas, which aims to give at least 5 Mbps to more than 80 percent of regional areas. Altogether the two networks will give high speed broadband to more than 90 percent of the nation’s population.