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


Bhutan acts swiftly on AT Tester findings

On May 9th and 10th, LIRNEasia presented a selection of its research on Bhutan and of potential relevance to Bhutan at events organized in Thimphu. The following news report indicates that BICMA the Bhutan regulatory body is acting on one of the findings of the diagnostic tests run on broadband connectivity in Bhutan that showed poor connectivity among Bhutan ISPs.

Broadband users can now self-regulate the bandwidth provided by the operators with the help of software which will be made available for free.

Bhutan InfoComm and Media Authority (BICMA), in a move to facilitate the operators give better services and to emphasis evidence-derived regulations, tied up with LIRNEasia, an ICT policy and regulation think tank. LIRNEasia is based in Sri Lanka but works in all the South Asian countries and some South East Asian countries.

LIRNEasia had earlier presented a study on broadband quality in Bhutan. The study showed that the quality of connectivity among the national internet service providers was not up to acceptable international standards.

“It was revealed that one of the most pressing problems is connecting two internet service providers (ISPs) called “peering”. It shows that the quality of peering is not satisfactory,” said Wangay Dorji, the head of telecommunication division of Bicma.

The internet speed of the ISPs in Bhutan was above the international benchmark, which is 300 millisecond return trip time.

He said that Bicma felt the need to do something. “If we do not do anything, the traffic within Bhutan cannot be exchanged at the international level. If it has to be exchanged internationally, it has a lot of cost as well as bandwidth utilisation.”

As a regulator, rather than being reactive, we want to be proactive, he said.

The slides presented by LIRNEasia on 9th May 2011 on the AT tester findings can be found HERE

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