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Andina Link, the International fair for telecommunications and convergent technologies, was officially inaugurated this Tuesday, March 7, at the Las Américas Hotel and Convention Center in Cartagena.

"For the National Government, the use of technology for development is very important and in this sense, Andina Link is a space that contributes to this objective. Proof of the importance that the State gives to the communications sector and new technologies to achieve development is the increase in the budget., said during the inauguration the Minister of Information and Communication Technologies, Sandra Urrutia Perez.

The official took advantage of the Andina Link 2023 space to make the presentation of Plan Connect TIC vision 360 whose fundamental objective is to substantially improve the country's connectivity, taking it from the current 60,5% to 85%, and that this connectivity, plus a digital literacy program, generate development and improve the quality of life of Colombians, especially in rural areas.

"The Plan Conecta TIC vision 360 embodies the vision of the National Government and the ICT Ministry that has to do with the fact that technology should be a right and a tool that allows development to be brought to the regions to make a change from extractive economy to a productive economy that benefits Colombians”added the official, stressing that this vision is already embodied in the National Development Plan 2022-2026.  

Andina Link inauguration
The ICT Minister, Sandra Urrutia, among other officials, attended the inauguration of Andina Link 2023.

The ICT Minister presented a geographical x-ray of the country in terms of the digital divide, highlighting that it is to those least connected territories that the government will give priority. In this sense, she defended the model of community Internet networks, which are the ones that provide a service to the citizens of rural areas, but she clarified that they must be regulated.

To its turn Luz Marina Arango, Executive President of Andina Link highlighted the importance for the industry of this event that, with 28 years of experience, has positioned itself as the ideal place for negotiations and networking of the industry in Latin America.

“The future of communications lies in the connectivity that allows for inclusion and development. In this sense Andina Link represents a great opportunity to explore the world of communications and its new trends in order to respond to problems in fields such as education, health, climate change and social exclusion. assured Luz Marina Arango.

The executive president of Andina Link presented a successful case of technology as a tool to bring education to 1.500 children in the municipality of Quebrada Negra, Cundinamarca.

“In this municipality they had computers, but they did not have an Internet connection, which made them inefficient. But thanks to various people and organizations, these children today have the Internet and a tool that will help them in their education.", he counted.

In the inauguration of Andina Link 2023 also participated Nicholas Silva, new executive director of the Communications Regulation Commission (CRC), the governing body in the country regarding telecommunications regulation.

“As has already been said, connectivity is essential for the development of our country. To achieve this, it is necessary to coordinate the different actors in the communications sector and From the CRC what we can contribute is a modern and efficient regulation that allows the installation of infrastructure in all areas of Colombia”, Silva pointed out.

Miguel Felipe Anzola, general director of the National Spectrum Agency (ANE) highlighted the importance of the spectrum as a technological enabler for all the technological tools that generate development.

“We are working with all the productive sectors because spectrum is just the vital enabler for the development of new services. To increase coverage we are looking to use unlicensed spectrum or free use”, he pointed.

It should be noted that during the 4 days those attending Andina Link 2023 will be able to enjoy and take advantage of a complete academic agenda with national and international experts.

In addition, there will be a place to participate in spaces such as the Ibero-American Forum of Convergence and Audiovisual FICA 2023, an open stage in which the challenges of the sector will be discussed.

Another point to highlight is that for the first time Andina Link will have a special place for Smartcities. And it is that within the academic agenda international experts will address the multiple dimensions of Smart Territories, including regulatory aspects, presenting an updated perspective of present and future challenges.

When presenting the academic agenda, the coordinator gabriel levy He highlighted that the issue of smart cities is addressed for the first time within the framework of Andina Link.

"This is the great novelty, and it is likely that in a few years there will be an Andina Link dedicated exclusively to the topic of Smart Cities, which has such special relevance in our modern life."