The African Experience Building both Supply _ Demand by pengtt


									     The African Experience:
 Building both Supply & Demand
                   InfoDev Workshop
                    Monday, Mar 14, 2005
                       World Bank Office
   Mike Jensen
     Lack of Fixed Lines -
       the Major Barrier
- In 2004 there were about 25 million lines for
  the 800 million people in Africa.
- In Sub Sahara outside South Africa, there
  were only about 4 million lines - 1 in 200
- In many countries more than 90% of these
  lines are in the capital city and secondary
  towns, while 70-80% of the people live
  outside these areas:
E.g. Malawi has 8 000 fixed lines for the 10
  million people living outside the 4 major
  towns: 1 line for every 1250
                            GSM Coverage

Cost of calls are high, and data
speeds low. Why so much
better in Asia?
Need for International Fibre
 And National Backbones
Radio – the most widespread
medium, but still few licenses

• Some countries have liberalised the sector
  and allowed some private sector radio & TV
• A few countries such as Mali, South Africa
  and Uganda, have issued notable numbers of
  community radio and non-profit licenses
• But outside of the capital cities, coverage is
  still usually limited to one or two state
  operated channels
Import duties,
    Restrictive Regulatory
 Environment - The Key Barrier
- State owned monopolies still dominate
- Some foreign investment in monopolies
in return for continued exclusivity
- Limited introduction of competition - 1 or
2 additional fixed line players in a few
- The limited number of GSM operators (2-3
in each country) making big profits while
fixed line operators increasingly redundant
and other new technologies prohibited
(VOIP, VSAT, WiFi etc)
Exploiting new technology
• Low cost Internet appliances – Thin clients,
  Mobile Phones & Handhelds
• Wireless - Local loop / WiFi/WiMax => Mesh
• Geo Satellites - Intelsat, RASCOM, PanamSat,
  Eutelsat, NewSkies
• New low cost VSAT systems
• Data Broadcasting - WorldSpace & DSTV
• Hybrid Systems  mixed technologies
• Using power grid infrastructure
• User Financed Infrastructure
Alternate Power Sources
- Promote knowledge of Solar, Wind, Biogas
- Need for financing, plus IPP policies
- Incentives, carbon credits?
- Elimination of Import duties
- Reduced power consumption
            Increasing Demand
• Public access facilities – Telecentres, Cybercafes
  => Universal Service Objectives?
• Exploit User Financed Infrastructure in local loop
• Build more relevant content – Electronic Funds
  Transfer, Agricultural/market info, e-govt
• Voucher systems
• Access to credit for purchasing ICT equipment
• Capacity building
   • To use and manage comms & information facilities
   • To use be aware of and to use new technologies – VOIP,
     WiFi, VSAT etc..
❐Exploit potential of offshoring/ outsourcing from
 the North (esp via diaspora & African-Americans)
Capacity Building & Human Resource

• Training of National Regulators

• Centres of Excellence – e.g ESMT and AFRALTI

• National Internet Training Centres – e.g. CITI

• Standards for User Training in Computer
  Applications - Computer Drivers License – ICDL

• Improved ICT Training programmes at schools,
  universities, research networks, workplace and
  informal environment
   Other Considerations

• Develop a phased approach which priorises
  activities – infrastructure, connectivity of
  key decision makers in business and govt

• Exploit employment creation potential of
  outsourcing from the North

• Improve national collaboration of key actors

• Increase representation at global level
Key Barriers To Be Eliminated
   • Restrictions on numbers of licenses for
     telecom operators, ISPs and broadcasters

   • High fees and slow process for licensing

   • Limitations on data-only private wireless
     and VSAT

   • Excessive import duties on ICT equipment

   • Limited skills and knowledge of options

   • Lack of finance for small businesses
• Focus on two key areas:
   • Open the markets
   • Finance national/international backbones - set
     up a fund which has open markets as a condition
     for access to funds
• Ensure more resources given to transport and
  power supply networks, alternative energy sources,
  and smoothing cross-border links
• Promote other demand building strategies: voucher
  systems, access to credit for SME ICT businesses
• Use an agreed set of progress benchmarks
• Stay technology neutral – let market decide
• Encourage infrastructure sharing (eg. Masts, rights
  of way, pylons, gas pipelines etc)
• Encourage (in interim) price capping for monopoly
  supplied bandwidth
• Do not use developed country models
   Thank You

To top