On behalf of the South-East Asia Regional Office of WHO, it is my great pleasure and privilege to welcome all of you to this landmark Regional Conference on Public Health. I appreciate your kind acceptance of our invitation and the interest you have shown to be here today. The objective of the Conference is to advocate the importance of public health for national, socio-economic and political development, and to promote newer strategies for developing sound public health systems in the new millenium. [To view this article, please download the PDF.]