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              Takashi Kawamura
              President,
              Center of the International
              Cooperation for
              Computerization

I nformation technology (IT) is utilized globally in all areas of endeavor, currently serving as one of the most powerful forces behind economic society in the 21st century. Fast growing Asian countries, developing countries and other regions of the world are also eagerly promoting IT Utilization in order to further spur economic growth and the sound development of society and also to build up their socio-economic infrastructure. Expectations are growing for Japan's collaboration in the field of IT (cooperation in the area of computerization) based on Japan’s advanced IT Utilization and extensive experience and rich expertise in IT. The Japanese Government, on the other hand, considers that responding to the demand of rapidly growing emerging nations in Asia and other countries around the world for infrastructure systems and leveraging those activities to achieve the further growth of Japan is an important part of its global development strategy. To establish and improve the socio-economic infrastructure and solve various issues including environmental problems in countries in Asia and other regions in the future through IT Utilization, it is becoming increasingly important to strengthen the collaboration in the IT field between Japan and other countries in Asia as well as countries around the world.

Since its foundation in 1983, the Center of the International Cooperation for Computerization (CICC) has been conducting a wide range of activities suitable for actual conditions of countries and regions, with the aim of promoting the development of human resources needed to undertake computerization in developing countries in Asia and other regions, computerization cooperation projects and technology transfer in cooperation with developing countries, and bilateral and multilateral interpersonal exchange in support of computerization. In tandem with those activities, we have been addressing the collection, transmission and exchange of information as an "information hub" for computerization in Asia, with the cooperation of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), relevant ministries and agencies, concerned organizations, supporting member corporations and others. Through our various cooperative activities conducted toward computerization during the past 30 years or so, we have done our best to contribute to computerization in Asia and other regions and fostered a tight and harmonious organizational and personal network, which is a valuable asset of CICC. Consequently, CICC is now regarded as a well-known and trusted organization around the world.

We will continue to carry out computerization cooperation activities positively in order to share the benefits of progress made in IT with people in Asian countries, developing countries and other regions of the world and to vitalize the collaboration between Japan and other countries in Asia and other regions in the area of IT. In these efforts, we look forward to your continued understanding and cooperation.