Regional Development Forum for Asia and the Pacific

ITU RDF Regional Development Forum for Asia and the Pacific 2023
September 13
 – September 15

The Asia and the Pacific Regional Development Forum (RDF-ASP) is organized by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in close collaboration with the Asia Pacific Telecommunity (APT). The Forum will be held in a hybrid format on 13 – 15 September 2023 in Bangkok, Thailand.

The RDF-ASP will report on the outcomes and implementation of the World Telecommunication Development Conference (WTDC-22) held in Kigali, Rwanda in June 2022. Emphasis will be given to the five Regional Initiatives for Asia and the Pacific approved by the WTDC-22. All the stakeholders will have an opportunity to discuss implementation plans, announce financial and in-kind commitments towards ongoing and future work, and exchange experiences and good practices.

The RDF-ASP provides an opportunity for exchange of views between ITU and decision-makers of ITU Member States and Sector Members as well as other stakeholders in the Asia-Pacific region. It serves as a platform for assessing strategic orientations that may have an impact on ITU’s regional work plan.

RDF-ASP will address, from a regional perspective, the results-based management approach applied for all actions carried out in the region as well as activities related to ITU Study Groups, Membership, Partnerships, and special initiatives. These include, but are not limited to, Partner2Connect, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Alliance for Digital Development, GovStack, Smart Villages and Smart Islands (SVSI), Digital Transformation Centres (DTC), Area Office and Innovation Centre in New Delhi, Connect2Recover, Critical Technologies and Cybersecurity, including the Digital Financial Services (DFS) Lab  Security Clinic, as well as regional contributions to the implementation of the World Summit on Information Society (WSIS) Action Lines and United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

A special segment of the event will be dedicated to the Partner2Connect Digital Coalition match-making that provides an opportunity for stakeholders’ to express their commitments which could be based on the pledges that they have already made or new pledges aimed at addressing country needs in Asia-pacific with the aim of advancing digital development in the region and implementation of the Regional Initiatives.

Additionally, there will be a specific segment dedicated to Cybersecurity and the Digital Financial Services (DFS) Security Clinic. The objective of this clinic is to share findings and recommendations from the FIGI Security Infrastructure and Trust working group for regulators and DFS providers with regards to addressing security challenges for digital finance. The target audience of the clinic includes ICT regulators, Central Banks/Financial, DFS providers, and other interested stakeholders.

Finally, RDF-ASP will also offer an opportunity to discuss ITU’s role in the UN system and its contribution at regional and country level to foster digital development.

Other events:

The RDF-ASP will be held back-to-back with the following events:

Target participants

RDF-ASP is organized to provide an opportunity for high-level dialogue between the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and decision-makers of ITU Member States, Sector Members, UN agencies and other key development stakeholders from the region.

RDF-ASP is open to all stakeholders willing to strengthen cooperation and partnership among telecommunication/ICT policymakers, regulators, industry, academia, regional and international development agencies, and organizations on specific regional telecommunication and ICT matters.


With support from ITU and partners, one full fellowship per eligible country of the Asia-Pacific region may be awarded, subject to available funding, to facilitate participation from developing countries. Priority will be given to fellowship applications from Least Developed Countries (LDCs). Full fellowships will cover the air ticket (one return economy class ticket by the most direct/economical route from the country of origin to the meeting venue), and appropriate daily subsistence allowance (intended to cover accommodation, meals and incidental expenses).

In line with Plenipotentiary Resolution 213 (Dubai, 2018), it is encouraged that fellowship nominations take into consideration gender balance and inclusion of persons with disabilities and with specific needs. The criteria to grant a fellowship include: available ITU budget; active participation, equitable distribution among countries and sub-regions within Asia and the Pacific; application by persons with disabilities and specific needs; and gender balance.

The deadline for submitting the fellowship request was 11 August 2023. For questions, please reach out to Fellowships Service by e-mail at [email protected] or by fax: + 41 22 730 57 78.


The RDF is also open for sponsorships. More information about sponsorship opportunities will be available at the following webpage at The deadline to express interest in the sponsorship package will  be available on that webpage.RDFs are open to all stakeholders willing to strengthen cooperation and partnership among telecommunication/ICT policymakers, regulators, industry, academia, regional and international development agencies, and organizations on specific regional telecommunication and ICT matters.


As part of the RDF-ASP 2023, ITU Office for Asia-Pacific is launching a Regional Consultation that presents an opportunity for ITU Member States, Sector Members, and other stakeholders to contribute to ITU’s activities at the regional level taking into account the strategic needs of the region and partner offerings/commitments during the period, 2023 – 2025. Stakeholders (Member States, and Partners) who will attend this RDF’S Partner2Connect roundtables are invited to submit their written contributions to be used as basis for discussions, by 23 August 2023. These may be submitted to: [email protected] using the RDF-ASP Contributions Template available here.