Abstract illustration of the Internet, symbolic for Internet Governance

© iStock.com/pheonix3d

The federal cabinet has approved the key elements of the German bid to host the 2019 Internet Governance Forum (IGF), as presented by the Economic Affairs Ministry. Germany is applying to the United Nations to hold the 2019 IGF in Berlin.

This candidacy sends out a strong signal to the domestic and international audience highlighting the priority attached to internet policy issues by the German government. During its G20 Presidency, the German government has been prioritising digitisation policy. For example, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy held the first G20 Digital Ministers Meeting in Düsseldorf in April, at which the participants committed not least to ensuring that everyone can access the internet by 2025, to tackling the digital gender gap, and to promoting lifelong digital learning.

The German government’s application also implements the goals it has set out in the Digital Agenda for Germany, and flags up the significance of international internet governance for Germany’s ICT sector.

The IGF is an open discussion platform on key internet issues involving all relevant groups in society. The aim is to foster an open dialogue and in particular to involve the previously underrepresented groups and representatives from developing and emerging economies. The IGF has been held annually since 2006. In 2016, it took place in Mexico, and in December 2017 it will be hosted by Geneva.