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Roundtable Meeting for Governments and Regulators in the Middle East

Tuesday, 21 November 2023

The RIPE NCC and the Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TDRA) of the United Arab Emirates convened the Seventh Internet Government Roundtable for the Middle East Region. High-level government delegations, including Arab ICT ministers and heads of regulatory authorities, gathered from 11 countries on 21 November 2023 at the Ritz-Carlton, Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).

The theme of this year's roundtable was "Cooperation for Digital Infrastructures and Sustainable Internet Policies in the Arab Countries," focusing on the critical challenges of building a sustainable and secure Internet in the Middle East region. The roundtable aimed to continue the progress made during the previous meetings by fostering cooperation in developing digital Internet infrastructure and discussing sustainable Internet policies.

Opening the roundtable with welcome speeches were prominent figures, including the ministers of MoICT in Palestine and the heads of regulators in the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Kuwait, Iraq, Egypt and Bahrain, in addition to the League of Arab States and the GCC Telecom bureau. Their collective presence underscored the importance of collaboration among governments and the RIPE NCC in advancing digital infrastructures and Internet policies. 

This roundtable marks another significant step in the collective journey towards a more connected and secure future for the Internet in the Middle East region.  

Read the press release (also available in Arabic).



10:00 am – 12:00 pm (Dubai time)

Opening and Welcome Speeches

  • H.E. Eng. Mohammad Al Zaroon, Deputy Director General, Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority, United Arab Emirates
  • H.E. Dr. Ishaq Sider, Minister of Telecommunications & Information Technology, Palestine
  • H.E. Eng. Bassam Al-Sarhan, Chairman and CEO, Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRC), Jordan
  • H.E. Mr. Omar Al-Omar, Chairman and CEO, Communications and Information Technology Regulatory Authority (CITRA), Kuwait
  • H.E. Dr. Ali Al-Muayed, CEO, Communications and Media Commission (CMC), Iraq
  • H.E. Eng. Hossam El-Gamal, CEO, National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA), Egypt
  • H.E. Eng. Omar bin Hamdan Al Ismaili, CEO, Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), Oman
  • H.E. Mr. Philippe Marnik, Director General, Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), Bahrain
  • H.E. Dr. Khaled Wali, Minister Plenipotentiary - Director of the Directorate of Communications and Information Technology Development, League of Arab States, Egypt
  • H.E. Eng. Bassel Al-Ayoubi, General Director, Ministry of Telecommunications, Lebanon
  • H. E. Hans Petter Holen, CEO and Managing Director, RIPE NCC, Netherlands
  • H. E. Piotr Strzyżewski, Member of the Executive Board, RIPE NCC, Poland
  • Outcomes of the sixth government roundtable: Successful cooperation in developing infrastructure and capacity development.
  • Latest statistics and trends in digital infrastructure: sharing successful experiences from some Arab countries.
  • National Internet Exchange Points and peering in and between Arab countries and its Impact on Internet security.
  • Cooperation and the role of Arab governments in developing and discussing RIPE and Internet public policies

12:00 Lunch