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

Tag Archives: subsidy

State-owned telco distributes free SIMs, money be damned

When I was working for the government of Bangladesh I was given a free Teletalk SIM. I wanted to use it. Who doesn’t like free stuff? I tried. Since I spent a lot of time at the Secretariat, I managed to actually make some calls. The challenge was finding a place to load some value. […]

India Department of Telecom gets into app financing

I was a little surprised by the report in the Hindu Business Line that the Department of Telecom is planning to set up a testing and payment infrastructure for mobile apps, along with a subsidy/investment scheme funded from the Universal Service Fund. I was surprised about the DoT taking the lead when apps seem to […]

Why don’t Americans think about what Hong Kong has achieved?

There was a time when voice telephony was seen as a public utility, requiring government involvement in supply. In most parts of the world, the end result was waiting lists and poor service. Now the same refrain is being sung re broadband. Why not take a look at Hong Kong? Here is where to start. […]

Another dysfunctional e subsidy program, this time in America

The money comes from everyone with a telecom connection in the US. And the government has trouble pushing it through. Five billion USD is a lot of money to keep unspent. Here, we’ve been griping about India’s USD 4 billion and Brazil’s USD 4 billion plus. The E-Rate program has been faulted for inadequately allocating […]

More taxes on US consumers to fund USD 4.5 billion Universal Service Fund

The program we talked about few weeks back has been announced. It will spend USD 4.5 billion a year to connect 20 million Americans to broadband. In an effort to expand broadband Internet service, the Federal Communications Commission on Thursday approved an overhaul of its fund that subsidizes rural telephone service, turning it into one […]

Is the US Postal Service a broadcast medium?

The right analogy is key to a decision to subsidize. When the main thing USPS does is distribute coupons, what rationale is there for subsidy? The Internet can’t be used to tele-transport packages, of course, and our use of package delivery services, including the Postal Service’s, has grown with e-commerce. But the Postal Service is […]

Does FTTH really worth a subsidy?

Governments are subsidizing millions and billions of dollars for the deployment of fiber up to the home, aka, FTTH. Such subsidies are based on the premise that fiber to the home brings substantial externalities. But Charles Kenny and his brother Robert Kenny claim that basic broadband has contributed significantly to economic growth is decidedly mixed, and points […]

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