I and many others have been critical about the performance of universal service funds. One of the main criticisms has been their inability to efficiently disburse the collected funds. Having USD billions stagnating in these funds does not make any sense. In previous comments I have simply referred to the massive accumulations in the Indian and Brazilian funds, but I always thought it would be a good idea to develop an index. The data are not always easy to get a hold of, but we are proposing an index, or actually two.
A carrier-neutral international cable that will connect Myanmar to Thailand and Malaysia is be operational by 2017. he story does not say anything about SEA-ME-WE 5, scheduled to be operational in 2016, and the AAE-1 cable scheduled for completion in Q4 2016. Nor is any mention made of the already built new links to China. Could this be because all the above except for SEA-ME-WE 5 are essentially cables that connect China to the world, which just happen to go through Myanmar? Any way, a carrier-neutral cable is always a good thing.
In the context of some work we were doing with the support of Ford Foundation we conducted four case studies of national broadband initiatives. The four case studies were presented at the Expert Forum we convened in New Delhi in March 2014 and may have contributed to the rethinking of the becalmed NOFN project that has now been relaunched as Digital India. The comparative analysis has now been published as Gunaratne, R.L. et al.
I have never been a great fan of NRI type indices where the components are somewhat opaque and some are subjective. Instead of going into the details of the method and weaknesses of components such as the mythical (for the most part) numbers of Internet users, I thought I’d check in against four countries that have launched major initiatives on broadband promotion using government subsidies: Australia, India, Indonesia and Malaysia. Australia’s plan is the winner in terms of public money committed and Malaysia is the winner in terms of households already connected. Case studies conducted with Ford Foundation support should be on the web shortly. Australia is holding steady at 18th place.
People in Sri Lanka felt the tremors from the April 11, 2012 tsunamigenic earthquake. Reports indicate that, before the Government of Sri Lanka could issue any kind of bulletin, within 10-15 minutes of the tremors, people were receiving tweets of the event. Samarajiva wrote – “Tweets kept flying. I and several others active in social media kept emphasizing that only a “watch” existed, that people should be alert and not do anything for now”; see full article in LBO. However, does twitter reach all Sri Lankans?
LIRNEasia Lead Scientist, Sujata Gamage, presented a paper on “Merits of the Carnegie Basic Classification for Benchmarking the Performance of Universities in the South” at the 8th Globelics International conference held on 1-3 November 2010 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The paper is co-authored by Il-haam Petersen, a former research intern. Click here to read the full paper and here to view PPT presentation.
Fitch Ratings, a global rating agency, said the South Asian and South East Asian countries are divergent in terms of regulatory risk. It says Sri Lanka has the highest risky regulatory environment while the risk is lowest in Malaysia. Buddhika Piyasena, Director in Fitch’s TMT team, said, Sri Lanka’s high regulatory risk score reflects insufficient transparency in the regulatory process combined with the regulator’s strong connection with the political framework. The total regulatory risk score for each market is derived based on three major sub-categories: Political & Social Policy Risk. Industrial Policy Risk.
Anybody could have guessed this. It is unimaginable that entire world will go through a recession simultaneously. Not everyone can be losers for too long. There should be winners somewhere. For example, what would the US firms that find their human resources costs, logically do?
A clinic on Communication for Policy Impact was conducted by Dr. Rohan Samarajiva, Helani Galpaya and Nilusha Kapugama of LIRNEasia at the recently concluded IDRC PAN-All conference in Penang, Malaysia. The necessity of communicating or disseminating good research results to stakeholders such as the policymakers, private sector and media was one of the underlying themes of the conference. The clinic focused on giving participants the necessary tools to formulate a communications strategy for a given project. Some of the key aspects identified were: identification of relevant audience/s and appropriate method/s of communication, importance of story telling timing of the release of results recognition of policy windows The importance of developing a communications strategy at the proposal stage of the project was highlighted.
Infosys Technologies chairman and chief mentor N.R. Narayana Murthy has declined to be the IT advisor to the Sri Lankan government, the IT bellwether said Wednesday. In a letter to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Murthy said he had decided to withdraw from being the advisor due to personal reasons. “I thank you for the courtesy shown to me during my recent visit to Sri Lanka.
LIRNEasia’s Nuwan Waidyanatha will be making a presentation on ‘Common Alerting Protocol (CAP)’ at the ‘ITU Asia-Pacific Centres of Excellence Training/Workshop on Effective Use of Telecommunications/ICTs in Response to Disasters: Saving Lives, to be held on 24-28 November, 2008, in Kedah, Malaysia. The Training Workshop will focus on concepts and hands-on training on various technologies and applications that are suitable for deployment and aimed at facilitating rescue and relief operations in emergencies, especially in the aftermath of a disaster. The stated aims of the workshop are to: create awareness and demonstrate telecommunication technology options, facilities and services applicable for use in response to disasters or emergencies especially in disaster relief operations; provide practical experience to participants in using the telecommunication/ICT facilities and services during these operations; strengthen partnerships in disaster relief among international agencies/organizations, NGOs, industry, and governments as well as encourage roles of public sector or NGOs identify issues and challenges in countries in order to find ways to overcome them. This workshop is organized jointly by the Telecommunication Development Bureau of the ITU, Universiti Utara Malaysia (ITU CoE ASP UUM), the Ministry of Energy, Water and Communications (MEWC), Malaysia and sponsored by the Department of Broadband, Communications and the […]
GSMA, the global trade body representing the mobile industry, called on Bangladesh to issue 3G licences soon to make broadband services more widely available. Licensing the 2100 MHz spectrum band for 3G services would enable Bangladeshi operators to launch mobile broadband services, which their customers can use to gain fast and easy access to the Internet and online services, it said on Wednesday. Bangladesh’s mobile sector has grown rapidly, with user numbers reaching more than 45 million at end-September from 200,000 in 2001, while the country has only 1.32 million fixed-line phones. “Laying new fixed-line connections is expensive and inefficient, so high-speed mobile networks are Bangladesh’s best bet to realise the many social and economic benefits that arise from widespread access to broadband services,” said Ricardo Tavares, senior vice president for public policy at the GSMA.
The number of subscribers to High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) services – a technology that enables broadband access on mobile phones and other computing devices – will more than double next year in Asia, according to a forecast by telco industry group GSM Association (GSMA). In an interview with BizIT, Jaikishan Rajaraman, GSMA director of product and service development, said the number of users in Asia subscribing to HSPA will swell from 26.5 million to 53.5 million over the next 12 months. Fuelling this trend are soaring demand from both businesses and consumers, coupled with falling prices of mobile broadband services, he said.
Blueshift is one of the currently India based companies looking to move to neighbouring countries like Malaysia or Singapore where they believe it would be cheaper to operate. “The corporate tax regime in this country is a tough 33% whereas when I look at neighbouring country Singapore it is only 18% at the highest level,” says Blueshift’s chairman Sankaran P Raghunathan. “In fact, most of us have to pay only 7.5%. That’s a huge difference.
A United Nations survey of global e-government readiness has found that many Asian countries are sliding down the rankings. Just one Asian country—South Korea—made the top ten coming in at sixth, with Japan next on 11th. The next highest was Singapore at a surprisingly low 23rd, and Malaysia at 34th. The top 35 countries are otherwise dominated by Europe, Australasia and North America. The biggest revelation was that most Asian countries are sliding down the rankings.
A little known Irish company is attempting to breathe life back into the moribund concept of high altitude platform stations (HAPS) in the stratosphere to provide network connectivity to users. The latest wheeze is to provide service courtesy of some antiquated Russian-designed military aircraft. Qucomhaps claims to have raised US$355 million to launch the service above Malaysia using aircraft that will circle the coverage area and provide wireless transmission to end users on behalf of service providers. It says it will trial the concept in Malaysia next March. The company has made waves in the Malaysian media this week with claims that it will set up a national network offering data speeds of 512kbps.