Special Feature
Part of a ZDNet Special Feature: Coronavirus: Business and technology in a pandemic

United Nations partners with Tencent to host global meetings online

The organisation has plans to conduct millions of conversations using Tencent Meeting, WeChat Work, and Tencent Artificial Intelligence Simultaneous Interpretation.

The United Nations (UN) has announced its plan to use tech from China's Tencent to host online conversations, with the COVID-19 outbreak preventing these from taking place in person.

Using VooV Meeting, the international version of Tencent Meeting, WeChat Work, and Tencent Artificial Intelligence Simultaneous Interpretation, the UN said it would host "thousands of online conversations" for its 75th anniversary.

Special adviser to the secretary-general on the preparations for the commemoration of the United Nations' 75th Anniversary Fabrizio Hochschild said the UN wants to strengthen the UN75 initiative in the digital space to adapt to the current constraints.

"We are grateful to Tencent for their generous support to the UN75 initiative," Hochschild said.

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"Their dialogue tools and videoconferencing services will greatly enhance our capacity to reach out to more people across the globe. Tencent's technology and global outreach is particularly important to reach young people. As one of the world's largest tech companies, Tencent's support for the UN75 campaign sets an important example."

The UN is hoping to connect with millions of people through Tencent's tech, asking for thoughts on what the world should look like in 25 years' time and what role international cooperation should play in solving global challenges like climate change and pandemics such as the coronavirus.

"The United Nations is calling on people all around the world to engage in a global dialogue and empowering partners to organize and participate in online discussions of any scale with the help of Tencent's VooV Meeting platform, WeChat Work, as well as Tencent AI SI," the UN said.

Since its launch last December, Tencent Meeting has accrued over 10 million daily active users. VooV Meeting is available online in over 100 countries and regions.

Tencent said in a statement that as the entire world combats the coronavirus pandemic, international cooperation and solidarity are more critical than ever.

"Global collaboration not only plays a vital role in human well-being and our future, but is also the key to fighting the current global pandemic." Tencent president Martin Lau said. "Tencent is honoured to participate and facilitate UN75 global conversations. We will spare no effort in providing technical solutions to support online meetings and idea exchanges for the UN, with the aim of bringing the global village even closer together and overcoming global threats through extensive dialogue and cooperation."

The views and ideas generated will be presented to world leaders during the 75th Session of the General Assembly in September 2020.