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Liberalisation key for next billion Internet users: OECD

An OECD report, Global Opportunities for Internet Access Developments, says that the next billion Internet users will be very different from the first billion and governments in developing countries, where these users will come from, must adapt strategic regulatory and investment policies to lower access costs.  

“The characteristics of these new Internet users will be vastly different from the first billion users,” the report concludes, adding that the majority of the new Internet users will be accessing the Internet on wireless networks and will have incomes of less than US$2 per day.   

While the report sees encouraging signs from developing markets that have adopted market liberalisation and who are now starting to enjoy the employment, micro- entrepreneurial and social development benefits of increased competition, there remain many countries that need to catch up.  

According to the report, “more than 70 countries still have monopolies over international gateway services,” which “raise the prices for accessing international capacity, far beyond costs, and reduce the affordability of Internet access for end-users.”  Read more.

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