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Seoul Declaration for the Asia Pacific Information Infrastructure

We, APEC Ministers responsible for telecommunications and information industry, gathering in Seoul on 29 and 30 May, 1995,

Reaffirming the Bogor Declaration in which APEC Economic Leaders:

— agreed to strengthen the multilateral trading system, enhance trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, intensify development cooperation, including free and open trade and investment by industrialized economies by no later than the year 2010 and developing economies by no later than the year 2020; and

— noted the critical role of the infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region, including telecommunications and information, in accomplishing this goal;

Acknowledging the spirit of the Joint Statement of the Jakarta Ministerial Meeting which emphasized that a priority be given to enhancing the regional infrastructure including telecommunications, and recommendations of the Eminent Persons Group report which highlighted the importance of technical cooperation in improving the telecommunications infrastructure among member economies for the mutual benefit of all APEC member economies to a similar and substantial degree;

Considering that the information infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region is an integral part of and can contribute to the development of the global information infrastructure;

Emphasizing the contribution of the APEC Working Group on Telecommunications (TEL) in promoting telecommunications cooperation, trade and investment liberalization and facilitation in the region, and a role of the TEL in enhancing the information infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region through an Asia Pacific Information Infrastructure (APII) initiative;

Recalling the diversity in the level of economic development and information infrastructure disparity among member economies which has kept APEC members from sound and sustainable economic development in the region;

Reconfirming the necessity for every member economy to develop the objectives and principles for a national information infrastructure, as far as possible, consistent and complementary with those of the APII when establishing its own information infrastructure;

Recognizing that a greater business/private sector initiative and investment is vital for successfully implementing the APII and that policy coordination and harmonization among member economies can facilitate a competition and market-driven environment;

Believing that the APII will contribute to creating jobs and sustaining economic growth and the prosperity of the next generation in the region;

Reconfirming the necessity of developing timely action plans that include long-range goals and advancement of the APII;

Do hereby agree to commit themselves to strengthen cooperation in every level for the APII in an effective and balanced manner for the regional and global prosperity;

Define the five objectives as:

1. Facilitating the construction and expansion of an interconnected and interoperable information infrastructure in the region;
2. Encouraging technical cooperation among member economies in the development of the infrastructure;
3. Promoting free and efficient flow of information;
4. Furthering the exchange and development of human resources; and
5. Encouraging the creation of a policy and regulatory environment favorable to the development of the Asia Pacific Information Infrastructure;

Declare the ten core principles for the APII as:

  1. Encouraging member economies in the construction of domestic telecommunications and information infrastructure based on their own reality;
  2. Promoting a competition driven environment;
  3. Encouraging business/private sector investment and participation;
  4. Creating a flexible policy and regulatory framework;
  5. Intensifying cooperation among member economies;
  6. Narrowing the infrastructure gap between the advanced and developing economies;
  7. Ensuring open and non-discriminatory access to public telecommunications networks for all information providers and users in accordance with domestic laws and regulations;
  8. Ensuring universal provision of and access to public telecommunications services;
  9. Promoting diversity of content, including cultural and linguistic diversity;
  10. Ensuring the protection of intellectual property rights, privacy and data security.