Press Release

May 15, 2003


Contact: Rizopoulos Giannis;; +30 2 10 6889100


The preparations for the most important global event in the IT industry are under way


Athens, Greece - Greece is fully capable of playing an important role in Southeastern Europe, in ICT, while large multinational companies pick up Athens as a hub for their activities, the city of wisdom and vision.


This idea came up again and again during the Press Conference held yesterday, in a central Athens hotel, regarding the 14th World Congress 2004 on IT (WCIT 2004), which will be hosted by SEPE, the Federation of Hellenic Information Technology & Communications Enterprises. The organization of the Congress was awarded to SEPE three years ago by WITSA, the World Information technology & Services Alliance. WCIT 2004, which is considered one of the most important events in this sector, will take place in Athens, on 19 - 21 May, 2004, and will be preceded by a Business Forum, on the 17th and 18th.


The honorary speaker at the Press Conference was the Minister of Interior, Public Administration and Decentralization, Kostas Skandalidis, who pointed out that the hosting of WCIT –the Ministry fully supports the Congress as the official Pinnacle Sponsor- is a very special honor for our country. «I am quite sure that the Congress hosted by SEPE will succeed and will be combined in a most harmonic way with the Athens Olympics. Technology, civilization and the spirit of competition, the thirst for distinction and reward are the basic components of our vision for the future. The Greek State support to the success of the Congress will be full and real. WITSA’s effort to promote the benefits from the use of high technology in every human activity is quite important and nobody could disagree on that. Information and Telecommunications Technologies is the new vehicle that should unite, facilitate the creativity, pull down the barriers of fantasy and enthusiasm, contribute to a better quality of life. It should widen the horizons of education and facilitate the spreading of civilization, towards the Knowledge Society», the Minister declared.


The host of the event, the Chairman of SEPE, Athanasios Pouliadis, pointed out that  "The WCIT 2004 is a challenge for our industry as it will coincide with an expected market growth after a long and extremely painful period of stagnancy. We will be asked to accelerate the implementation of very important projects for all sectors, as they depend more and more on Information Technology and Communications. Our resources must be regrouped in order to respond to this challenge and increase, in this way, the specific weight that ICT plays in the economic and social growth worldwide and in each country". He added that “the Congress offers a unique opportunity to demonstrate the significance of technology to the growth of every national economy, as well as its contribution in order to bridge the digital, social and geographical divides” and concluded by saying that "Greece is at a turning point in 2004, hosting the two most important events worldwide: The Summer Olympics and WCIT! We are confident we will make both an unprecedented success!"


 "The World Congress in Athens next year will be the single most important global event in the IT industry," said Harris N. Miller, WITSA President and President of the American IT Association. "It is often said that all of philosophy is merely a footnote to the greatest of all philosophers, Plato. Similarly, all other IT events will be a footnote to the World Congress." Mr. Miller declared. "The Congress will provide an historic opportunity for Greece to showcase its technology and innovation to an international audience. And the Greek IT community will welcome industry, government and academic luminaries from around the globe to the city that will demonstrate its place as a global IT leader, in addition to being the host of the Olympics" he added.


The last speaker, WCIT 2004 CEO Dimos Vatikiotis, said that the preparations for the World Congress are well under way. “The response of enterprises and organizations in Greece as well as abroad is definitely positive. Which is quite natural, as the possibilities offered by WCIT in order to analyze the current situation and forecast the trends and directions of the world market just listening to the most well-known opinion leaders, and the opportunities to develop new business relations, seem to attract entrepreneurs, from all over the world. That is why WCIT 2004 will sure prove to be –one more time- the focal point of interest, in May 2004, as all the eyes in the world ICT market will be turned towards Athens”.