A4AI celebrates its fifth birthday – BusinessGhana News

A4AI celebrated its fifth anniversary. Five years after our 2013 launch in Lagos, we’ve seen broadband prices come down and attention around the importance of affordable internet access grow. Our membership has grown to 80+ strong and countless, and our national coalitions are leading the charge for affordable internet policy across seven countries.We’ve worked to fill important research gaps, and we will release our fifth annual Affordability Report in a matter of days. We know that our work is far from over, but we’re proud of the progress we’ve made so far, and look forward to working with you all to realise our shared goal of affordable internet for all.

2018 Africa Summit on Women & Girls in Technology

We’ve just returned from three inspiring days in Accra, Ghana for the 2018 Africa Summit on Women and Girls in Technology. The Summit brought together over 250 women and girls from across the African continent to devise solutions for unlocking Africa’s digital future ” with women and girls at the heart of it. The event, co-organised by A4AI, the Web Foundation, and a number of other partners, featured speeches by A4AI Honorary Chair Dr Omobola Johnson, and Ghana’s Deputy Minister of Communications, Hon. Vincent Odotei. The event received widespread media coverage, including in BBC Focus on Africa, Reuters, Ghana Web, Business Ghana, BizTech Africa, DW, and African Eye. See photos from the event.

National coalitions spearhead broadband planning

Ghana

The recent meeting of the A4AI-Ghana Coalition looked at policies to encourage new technology players in the broadband space. It was followed by a roundtable on broadband infrastructure, which gathered inputs from industry players for expanding access and developing the country’s new digital strategy policy, which will aim to harmonise existing ICT policies to take advantage of emerging digital opportunities  from finance to education, and technology towards the creation of a knowledge-based economy.

Guatemala

In Guatemala, the A4AI team is working closely with our partners and COMTELCA to finalise the detailed roadmap to broadband in the country, which will form as the basis for the national broadband plan.
Nigeria

The A4AI-Nigeria Coalition and its partners are organising the Nigeria Broadband Infrastructure Forum on October 30. The forum will bring together players from across the government and private sector to discuss needed changes to the country’s broadband infrastructure, and to determine how the National Broadband Plan can be updated to improve infrastructure, reduce costs and expand access.

Bangladesh

The A4AI-Bangladesh Coalition is now working to prepare a research report based on findings from the country’s recent ICT national household survey. Scheduled to launch in November, the report findings will form the basis for discussions around key areas in the country’s new Broadband Strategy and Plan.

 

New mobile broadband pricing data

We recently released updated data on the price of 1GB of prepaid mobile broadband across 60 low- and middle-income countries. The data shows that while the cost to connect is coming down, just 24 countries meet the “1 for 2” affordability target, and progress remains slow. >>EXPLORE THE DATA

 

A LOOK AHEAD

NEWS YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED

>> The Web Foundation, together with the EQUALS Global Partnership and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, has launched the EQUALS Digital Skills Fund. The fund will provide grants to local initiatives providing gender-sensitive skills training across countries in the Global South.

>> A4AI member CETIC.br recently launched a free online course, “Tech for Good: The Role of ICT in Achieving the SDGs. The course launched on October 8 and will run through December 30. Enroll directly on edX.

>> What are the costs associated with providing internet access to consumers? A blog post by David Rogerson of Incyte Consulting breaks down the costs that industry must pay in order to make getting online a reality  a theme that will be further explored in our forthcoming Affordability Report.

>> Project Isizwe is A4AI’s newest local partner! Based in South Africa, they work to bring internet access to people across the country by deploying free internet hotspots in and around low-income communities.

>> Recent months have seen a growing number of governments across Africa levy taxes on popular internet applications and services. A4AI Deputy Director and Policy Lead Eleanor Sarpong looks at what these taxes mean for internet affordability, and why we’re concerned. 

>> A4AI has a new website! Check it out at a4ai.org and let us know your thoughts.

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