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Toward a Strategic Plan for Telecommunications Services in CARICOM

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Presentation on theme: "Toward a Strategic Plan for Telecommunications Services in CARICOM"— Presentation transcript:

1 Toward a Strategic Plan for Telecommunications Services in CARICOM
Hopeton S. Dunn, Ph.D. Director, Telecommunications Policy and Management Programme (TPM) Mona School of Business, UWI, Mona

2 Overview of Presentation
Status of Regional and Global Economy Definitions and Scope Global and Regional Trends in Telecom Telecommunications Landscape in CARICOM Regional Telecom Legislation and Policy Global and Regional Policy Framework Key Issues and Challenges The Strategic Planning Framework Approaches towards developing a CARICOM Strategy Closing Thoughts

3 Image Source:

4 Status of the Global Economy
Global economic activity for 2009 still set to contract by 1.4% In over 25 developing countries, investment growth in the final quarter of 2008 fell by an average of 6.9% IMF has increased its forecast of growth rate by 0.5% to 2.5% for However growth will be sluggish and uneven Sources: Prospects for the Global Economy (2009). A World Bank Publication . World Economic Outlook (updated) (2009). IMF Publication Source: Prospects for the Global Economy (2009). A World Bank Publication . World Economic Outlook (updated) (2009). IMF Publication

5 Impacts of Economic Crisis on CARICOM Countries
US and other major markets for CARICOM exports are now in recession Traditional exports (aluminum, oil, bananas, sugar and rice) suffering decreasing demand Overall major fall off in tourist arrivals (2009) Anguilla (-24.2%) Antigua and Barbuda (-27.7%) Barbados ( -17.4) Montserrat (-12.2%) Cruise Ship passengers arrivals down (between 2008 and 2009) Source: Clegg (2009). The Caribbean and the Global Financial Crisis: Implications for Domestic Politics and Foreign Policy; Caribbean Tourism Organization Sources:

6 Growth of Global Services Economy
Source: Source:

7 Growth of Services in Selected CARICOM Countries
Balance of services means the difference between exports and imports of services. The line graph above is therefore saying that most CARICOM countries are NET EXPORTERS of services, which contrasts starkly with exports of goods, particularly in Jamaica where we are net importers of goods. Source: CARICOM Regional Statistics

8 Centre-Periphery Model

9 Increased Competitiveness through Telecom Services
Increased recognition and emphasis on Telecoms and ICTs as one of the major drivers of economic growth and development, with a focus on access and affordability, across the populace; High voice telephony penetration but low Internet access and connectivity Recognition of the rapid contraction of conventional agricultural export crops and limited manufacturing production within the region

10 Definitions and Scope - WTO
At the WTO, Telecommunications Services defined based on two categories: 1 - Basic Telecommunications include private and public services that involve end-to-end transmission of information and provided through a network infrastructure, including: Voice telephone services Packet and Circuit switched data transmission services Telex and Telegraph Services Facsimile Services Private leased circuit services

11 Definitions and Scope - WTO
2- Value-Added Services, where suppliers “add value” to the customer's information by enhancing its form or content or by providing for its storage and retrieval. Services include, Electronic Mail Voice Mail Online information and database retrieval Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

12 Definitions and Scope – Telecom Services
Telecommunications services must be recognized as not being limited to an industry, but as a key component to the development of other industries in the matrix of social and economic development, such as Manufacturing, Banking and Finance. Telecommunications services do not refer only to infrastructure and hardware but also to data, information and knowledge and the associated human resource skills that are required.

13 Definition and Scope Telecommunications Services Infrastructure
ICT Manufacturing Business/Finance Other Productive Sectors Human Resource Skills/Knowledge Hardware/ Software/Data/ Information

Bahamas Flow (Cable Bahamas), BTC Haiti Digicel, Conatel Teleco Haitel Antigua Digicel, LIME St. Kitts and Nevis Digicel, LIME, Orange Belize Digicel, Belize Telecom Ltd. Speednet Montserrat LIME Dominica Digicel, LIME, Orange Jamaica Flow, Digicel, LIME, Claro St. Lucia Digicel, LIME Antilles Crossing St. Vincent Digicel, LIME Barbados Digicel, LIME TeleBarbados, Antilles Crossing Grenada Digicel, LIME, Flow Trinidad Digicel, Flow, TSTT, Laqtel Guyana Digicel, GT&T, Cel Star Suriname Digicel, Telesur, RTBG Adapted from Stern, 2006, Promoting Investment in ICTS in the Caribbean. Updated where information is available

15 Global and Regional Trends in Telecoms
Communications intensive economies, with high demand for new, mobile technologies in support of the increasingly culturally based service economy; Increased demand for bandwidth to satisfy connectivity needs; Moves towards regional harmonization in regional policy and planning; and Increased telecommunications and ICT investments in the region since 2000

16 Global Advancements in Telecom
Focus on mobile broadband and 3G / 4G services Increasing demand for high-end wireless technologies such as WiMax, mobile video calling/conferencing

17 Next Generation Networks (NGNs)
Rapid growth and demand for NGN services which afford the convergence of a host of services on the computer, laptop, netbook or mobile phone including: Media services Real time e-transactions and other business services Mobile marketing GPS / GIS and Security services Social Networking and virtual gaming

18 Telecommunications Landscape in CARICOM
Countries are at different stages on the ICT development continuum Source: Nurse. L.A. PhD. Digital Diaspora Network for Caribbean and ICT Development in CARICOM countries, 2003.

19 Telecommunications Landscape – Digital Access Index, ITU, 2003

20 Other Digital Indices Countries ranked in the Economist Intelligence Unit’s E-Readiness Index, 2008 Jamaica – 49th – 5.17 Trinidad and Tobago – 50th – 5.07 Digital Opportunity Index (ITU, 2007) Barbados 27th Jamaica 55th Trinidad and Tobago 59th St. Vincent 69th Grenada 71st St. Lucia 73rd

21 Preliminary SWOT Analysis
Strengths: - Basic Core of Highly Skilled Professionals - Competitive Wage Structure - Cultural and Creative Edge Weaknesses: - Poor intra-country broadband connectivity - Resource availability and allocation Opportunities: - Proximity to US and Canada - Lower barriers to entry - Wider market reach facilitated through technology - Large Caribbean Diaspora Threats: - Inadequacies in the policy environment - Global Economic Downturn

22 “The most important factor that led to America’s stunning success in information technology was not the free market but government regulation… These actions opened the door to competition and lower prices. More important, they changed the industry’s structure, replacing monoliths with smaller, specialised companies which have to work with others with complementary skills. The result has been tremendous innovation.” June 2, 2009

Country Legislation Policies Jamaica Telecommunications Policy, 2000 The Office of Utilities Regulation Act (1995) Telecommunications Policy, 2007 National Information and Communications Technology Strategy, 2006 Barbados Telecommunications Act, 2001 Fair Trading Commission Act (2001) Utilities Regulation Act, CAP.282 (2002) VoIP policy (2007) Barbados Unregulated Services Policy (2003). Trinidad & Tobago Telecommunications Act (2001), Amended(2004) Draft Policy for Micro, Small and Medium Sized International Public Telecommunications Service and/or Network Providers in Trinidad and Tobago(2004) National Information and Communications Technology Plan (Fastforward TT)

Country Legislation Policy Guyana Telecommunications ACT, 1990 The Public Utilities Commission Act (1999) Post and Telegraph Act Cap.47.01 National Development Strategy ( ) OECS Telecommunications Act - St. Lucia, 2000 - St. Vincent and Grenadines, 2000 - St. Kitts and Nevis, (Amended 2001) - Dominica, (Amended 2001) - Grenada, 2000 ECTEL makes policy recommendations to its member states, e.g.: - St. Vincent and Grenadines’ recent consultations on VoIP IP Telephony regulation policy,

25 Re-Thinking Regulation
Legislation dated with many Acts and Laws governing the telecom sector pre-dating Telecom liberalization in many states Legislation to address convergence of sector with Information Technology and media and its interactions with financial sector Other severely outdated laws to be reassessed include: Competition Laws Broadcasting and Cinema Laws E-Transactions and E-Government legislation still under development in a number of countries

26 The Global Policy Framework
WTO General Agreement on Trade in Services – provides legal framework for implementing policy reforms which would provide stability and regulatory certainty for investors in the Region UN Millennium Development Goals – social, economic and human development by 2015 Declaration and Action Plan of WSIS – framework for development of ICTs and its integration in to key social and economic sectors.

27 The Regional Policy Framework
CARICOM Connectivity Agenda Individually and collectively move towards expanding access to global knowledge and full integration with the knowledge society Modernization of the telecommunications sector Promoting and strengthening free and fair competition in telecommunications services Facilitating access to and usage of computers and software in our learning environments

28 The Regional Policy Framework
Affordable, high quality ICT services and equipment; Fair and competitive environment Reduced barriers for entry and simplified administrative rules; Government led adoption to the delivery of services Highly trained and skilled workforce Source: Green Paper - Action Plan for Telecommunications/ICT Services in CARICOM, 2007

29 Key Issues and Challenges
Policy and Legislative Framework Human Resource Requirements Infrastructure Requirements Access to and Use of Telecommunications Influencing Global Policy Financing Sustainability and Environmental Issues Regional Coordination / Cooperation

30 Policy, Legislative and Regulatory Framework
Pace of development of policy, legislative and regulatory framework not equal across the region Non-harmonized approach except in a few areas e.g. Spectrum policy. Technological advances often outpace the rate of change of the framework

31 Human Resource Requirements
Developing a renewable cadre of skilled specialists in technology and policy of the telecoms sector Identifying training and development gaps as well as the opportunities to fill those gaps within the region collaboratively Expanding existing training facilities Facilitating OPEN ACCESS cross-regionally

32 Infrastructure Requirements
Redressing the digital divide through regional level connectivity infrastructure Adequate investments needed in providing affordable region-wide broadband coverage Some level of investment has taken place through foreign firms such as Digicel, Claro, Orange, Verizon etc. However, the cost of capital for indigenous firms to compete in providing telecommunications services at affordable prices to the end users is often prohibitive.

33 Access to and Use of Telecommunications
Mobile telephony penetration is growing at a rapid rate in the region However there is a slower pace of growth in the adoption of more advanced business-oriented technologies Challenges include: Adopting regional policies that facilitate the move from basic telecommunications services to more advanced 3G applications Addressing pricing issues that make access and affordability of these services a deterrent to adoption

34 Other Key Issues and Challenges
Influencing global policy Un-coordinated regional participation in international processes, including WSIS, EPA, WTO discussions Missed opportunities to influence the global agenda Financing Enabling access to funding from indigenous financial institutions through tax incentives and otherwise Often unsuitable terms and conditions are associated with funding from multilateral agencies

35 Other Key Issues and Challenges
Sustainability and Environmental Issues Mitigating adverse effects, including: carbon emissions, climate change, e-junk, etc. Regional Coordination / Cooperation Redressing the fragmented regional approach to telecom policy making with several institutions often with overlapping and confusing jurisdictions (CTU, CARICOM Division, CKLN) This also prevails at the national level in some cases

36 The Strategic Planning Framework
Creating a Strategy for Telecom Services E-Business and Industry: Enabling regional e-business environment E-Government: Citizen-centric, participative governance Research and Development: For evidence based policy and applied research

37 Organizational Implications
Organized, co-ordinated CARICOM machinery and strong political will Common vision for telecommunications across CARICOM Public/Private sector/Civil Society partnership model Evidence-based policy making through Research and Development Mechanisms for measurement and evaluation of progress

38 Approaches towards Developing a CARICOM Strategy
Policy-Relevant Data Gathering Analysis of existing plans, strategies and policies on regional and national levels Review of key global policy documents Benchmarking with other regions on existing strategies and stages in development Region-wide Consultations

39 E-Powering Jamaica Bridging the Digital Divide
National ICT Strategic Plan Prepared for Central Information Technology Office (CITO) Ministry of Industry, Technology, Energy and Commerce, Government of Jamaica by Hopeton Dunn Ph.D. and Evan W. Duggan Ph.D. Mona School of Business UWI, November 2006

40 National Development Plans
Image Sources:

41 Desk Research Key documents for review and analysis
Global, e.g. WSIS, GATS agreements Regional, e.g. CARICOM documents and other initiatives National, e.g. National Telecom/ICT Plans, National Telecom Policies and Regulations Statistical Indicators

42 Benchmarking Analyses
Analysis of existing national and regional strategies for telecommunications services in the developed and developing world including: Europe South East Asia Africa Central America South America Also some countries: Ireland, Ghana, South Africa, Malaysia, Costa Rica, US, UK

43 Fieldwork and Primary Data Gathering
Focus groups and interviews in a selection of countries e.g. Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago, ECTEL Online questionnaires and online forums for other major stakeholders across the region Data-gathering through network of in- country research coordinators

44 Consultative Approach
Intermittent drafts to be reviewed in 3-4 consultations to be held at different locations in the region Jamaica Trinidad ECTEL

45 Expected Outcomes Final Document must be the result of consultations with stakeholders at all levels across the region Will include: Region-wide strategy with consideration of commonalities as well as the variations in the region Operational Plan with specific timelines and monitoring mechanisms

46 Closing Thoughts A pro-active strategy for telecom services will require three key elements; harmonization at all levels, co-ordination and co-operation among all stakeholders including governments, businesses, civil society and international and multilateral interests.

47 Thank You!

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