Permanent Mission of India
Statement by India at 15th session of United Nations Commission on science and Technology for Development, at the briefing meeting on open consultation on Enhanced Cooperation on Public Policy issues related to Internet, delivered by Smt. Alpana Dubey, First Secretary (Economic), on May 22, 2012
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak.
1. During the Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD) One day open Meeting on Enhanced Cooperation on May 18, 2012, we emphasised that a multi-stakeholder, democratic participative and transparent global policy-making mechanism needs to be instituted, as mandated by the Tunis Agenda of 2005 under the process of ‘Enhanced Co-operation’, and also recommended by the Working Group on Internet Governance (WGIG).
2. We are aware from the discussions on 18th May that a majority of Countries (about 12) in their statements, made the demand for a suitable mechanism/ process for an outcome oriented Enhanced Cooperation on the issue of Internet Governance, and it should involve all the member states of UN on an equal footing. Several Civil Societies also expressed the same concern.
3. Presently, most of the important areas of public policy online are not administered by multi-stakeholder networks at all.
4. We wish to elaborate on the view of some countries that the existing system of internet management and the role of Internet Governance Forum (IGF) are sufficient to continue the debate on issues related to enhanced cooperation. While we note that IGF has achieved some success in capacity building, it has contributed little to global public policy making. It has been struggling to evolve an effective format and methodology to make meaningful contributions to global Internet-related public policy. IGF has been a platform for discussions, but it is not a decision making body. We, therefore, are yet to be convinced whether or not IGF could transform itself to the kind of process required for Enhanced Cooperation on Internet Governance.
6. As you are aware, last year India had made a comprehensive proposal for improvements in IGF. IGF has not been able to address the cross-cutting public policy issues such as internet freedom, cyber security, privacy of data, reliability of internet service, accessibility to trouble shooting, piracy, etc. These need to be discussed and addressed at some platform involving all stakeholders, if the objectives of the Tunis Agenda are to be attained.
7. Therefore, the establishment of a ‘Working Group on Enhanced Cooperation’ would be an important step forward, and would provide the platform to voice concern on the international public policy issues pertaining to Internet and its Governance. We have clearly stated that, India would be pragmatic and flexible in its approach.
8. We would request the Chair of the CSTD to reflect in its report, on the one day meeting on Enhanced Cooperation held on 18th May, 2012, the factual positions as maintained by the Member States and the other stakeholders, including Civil Societies and Private Sectors. We would strongly urge that the process of discussion on all aspects of internet governance that have been raised so far, should continue. That would aim at keeping the Internet sustainable, robust, secure and stable and promoting a developmental agenda through the Internet.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.