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Debating the need for an updated National Telecom Policy for Bangladesh

We don’t go as far as Cisco which claims that countries can increase penetration simply by promulgating policies or plans, but there is real value in having updated policies in place so that all the players are reading off a common script. Bangladesh is struggling with getting itself a new policy:

Abu Saeed Khan, a senior policy fellow of LIRNEasia which is a Colombo-based ICT policy and regulation think tank, said the current policy describes mobile phone services as ‘value added services’, which indicates how outdated the policy is.

The policy was made by the then Awami League government, which is now in power again with the vision of establishing a ‘Digital Bangladesh’, he said.

The policy has to reflect how the government would achieve its vision, he added.

Khan said the revised telecom policy should provide a roadmap to take broadband penetration to respectable levels.
The policy is too old to describe the telecom sector as most of the policy’s targets have been met by 2010.

One of the objectives of the policy was to establish a robust private sector, as it was beginning to boom at the time, but the situation is quite different now, he added.

Report in Daily Star.

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