LIRNEasia is a regional ICT policy and regulation think tank active across the Asia Pacific

Monthly Archives: June, 2009

Sri Lanka: What is the Environment Ministry doing with the envi levy?

In other countries, government are focusing on removing electronic equipment from the waste stream, basically requiring the equipment vendors to take the unwanted equipment back. Since January, Washington State residents and small businesses have been allowed to drop off their televisions, computers and computer monitors free of charge to one of 200 collection points around […]

Colloquium: Mobile 2.0: m-money for the unbanked

Colloquium conducted by Dr. Erwin Alampay of NCPAG, Philippines. Presentation began by looking at the potential for M-money. Why should we use m-money? Improving efficiency: Improve services, financial services. BOP a target. BOP (migrants) relies on various forms of remittances Looking at Filipinos, 9% of BOP had a relative living abroad, and 13% in another […]

Media coverage on public phone use findings from T@BOP3 study

Findings on public phone use from the Teleuse@BOP3 study have been published in the Indian media. An excerpt of one, published by Yahoo, India follows: A new study says public telephones are the most frequently used method of making calls by Indian women at the bottom of the social pyramid compared to other South Asian […]

Media coverage of Dhaka release of migrant study results

The results of the migrant study that was conducted along with the teleuse@BOP 3 study were released in Dhaka today. The first of the news coverage: Expatriate Bangladeshis called home more frequently than their Pakistani, Indian, Sri Lankan and Filipino counterparts, spending $48 a month to stay in touch, a survey says. The survey ‘”Teleuse […]

Health Workers express difficulties in m-HealthSurvey

The main problem, identified by India and Sri Lanka health workers, with the Rural technology and Business Incubator (RTBI) developed m-HealthSurvey mobile application, was in the look up content. The application allows for the user to search for a disease name by typing a few characters of the name. Upon selection predefined symptoms and signs […]

Teleuse@BOP migrant study findings released in Dhaka

LIRNEasia‘s recent research on ICT use and remittances among migrant workers was released in Dhaka on 28 June 2009. The study of over 1,500 domestic and overseas migrant workers in six Asian countries (Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Thailand and Sri Lanka) has yielded some interesting insights in Bangladesh, with important policy implications. Demand for […]

Who hates mobiles?

The Shining Path did it; the JVP in Sri Lanka did it; the Taliban have made it a habit, and now the Maoists are on the job. What is this telephone envy? Concerned over frequent setback to telecommunication, hampering operations against the Naxals, the Home Ministry has offered that the towers could be located in […]

Sri Lanka and Pakistan rise in BPO rankings headed by India, but by enough? Where is Bangladesh?

AT Kearny has issued the 2009 Global Services Index. The good news for South Asia is that Sri Lanka has moved up from 29 to 16 and Pakistan from 30 to 20. India, of course, sits at the top, no change from 2007. The advances of Sri Lanka and Pakistan have been at the expense […]

LIRNEasia Lead Economist appointed to scientific advisory committee eARN Africa

LIRNEasia Lead Economist Harsha de Silva was recently appointed to a five-member Scientific Advisory committee for a two-year multi-country African research project, eAgriculture Network for Africa (eARN Africa): Effectiveness of Electronic-Based Interventions in Linking African Farmers to Markets. The project aims study the effectiveness of ICT-based intervention in linking African farmers to markets so as […]

Bypass drives “informal” FDI in Pakistan

Two years back China Mobile bought Paktel for US$460 million. That was a legitimate transaction. Last week two Chinese nationals were arrested while the authorities busted a bypass den at Islamabad. They have been allegedly the partner of an “influential Pakistani” in this illegal venture. It claims to have caused an estimated six billion rupees (US$74 million) […]

Censorship: the nuclear option

Some governments shut down telecom networks including the Internet to control dissent. Others do not. What are the conditions that give rise to the former action? Why do others not do this? Israel never shuts down telecom networks but Sri Lanka does. Why? And yet the Twittering goes on. As states such as Iran crack […]

Britain to tax fixed lines 6 pounds a year for broadband: expect more mobile-only households

To many people’s surprise, the UK has decided to tax every fixed line 6 pounds a year to build “next generation broadband” throughout the country. But Virgin’s network is limited and fibre-optic cables are expensive. The two firms can profitably reach only around two-thirds of the population, reckons Matt Yardley of Analysys Mason, a consultancy […]

Cheap connectivity to East Africa, hopefully . . .

Good news for the many outside and inside government who struggled to get this done, including our colleagues from Research ICT Africa. The necessary condition for cheap connectivity is about to the fulfilled. Last week, in the Kenyan port of Mombasa, a regional communications revolution belatedly got under way when Kenya’s president, Mwai Kibaki, plugged […]

Fixed line substitution driven by US economic crisis

It’s not only in Finland and India that they are returning fixed line connections . . . . At the University of Washington, the communications department faculty did away with their landlines. (“Phones were our biggest line item,” said David Domke, the department chairman. “We’ve still got landlines in common areas and for staff, but […]

Pakistan Telecom Authority shows futility of raising mobile taxes

The Pakistan Telecom Authority in their December 2008 quarterly review gives the reasoning behind the government’s decision to impose high taxes on mobile phone use. To reduce the high fiscal deficits, the government had increased taxes. The increase for the telecom sector was over 40 percent; for other sectors it was only seven percent. However, […]

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