Why should Internet community care about international backhaul?

Posted on October 3, 2016  /  0 Comments

screen-shot-2016-10-04-at-4-28-03-pmI was asked to select a topic when I was invited to deliver the keynote at the APNIC 42 conference that was moved from Dhaka to Colombo because of the terror attacks. APNIC people usually get their jollies by debating things like the pros and cons of IPv6 versus IPv4. I had no comparative advantage on such esoterica. So I thought I’d try to broaden their horizons a little. Little attention is paid in these kinds of gatherings to what make it possible for the packets to flow: the fiber cables and the spectrum. That should change.

After East Africa got cabled up, the Bay of Bengal became the least cabled area in the world. The Bay is what unites Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. The Bay is home to some of the fastest growing economies in the world. It is getting better connected. More needs to be done.

The slideset is here.

The talk is here.

I was asked what governments should do. I said they should create a good climate for investment, regulate effectively and otherwise stay out of the way. We can create the necessary conditions for connectivity, but the benefits will not flow to end users unless governments ensure that the domestic backhaul market is not monopolized and competition exists in the access market.

Image source.

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