Arabsat is to spread its wings and launch itself on the world stage, the Arab League's satellite communications organization said on Saturday, April 28.
The agency's annual general assembly, meeting in Mauritania, said it intended to compete on a world level in the areas of digital communication, the Internet, television and telephones.
"Our aim is to consolidate Arabsat's knowledge of communications and to develop it and progress further, as well as using it as a way of bringing Arab states closer together," declared Dahould Abdel Jelil, Mauritania's minister of telecommunications, who chaired the proceedings.
"Arabsat has served as an example of the success of Arabs working together," he added.
The Saudi president of Arabsat's administrative council, Mohammed Saad Chehri, said he felt the meeting had been successful despite the absence of several member states, including Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and the Palestinian Authority.
Arabsat is based in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, and currently uses three satellites to broadcast Arab television programs.
The organization was set up in 1976 as an inter-governmental alliance for satellite telecommunications between the member states of the Cairo-based Arab League. In 2000, it registered net profits of $46 million. — (AFP, Nouakchott)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)