Ghana: NCC Board member gives its price target as an E1 for US$100-500

Telecoms

A two day workshop called "Fiber Optic Undersea (Submarine) cable", in collaboration with West Africa Telecommunications Regulators Assembly (WATRA), the German Technical Group (GTZ) and also the National Communications Authority (NCA) at the La Palm Royal Hotel.

The workshop offered WATRA members the guidance regarding the regulation of access to new undersea cables and also come up with adoptable guidelines for issuance of undersea cable licenses and landing rights agreement. This would ensure the transparency in deployment and pricing of undersea cables.

A Member of the Board of Directors of NCA, Solomon Quandzie has observed that the availability of international bandwidth, coupled with NCA's plans for licensing additional terrestrial fiber optic cables systems, and also wireless broadband access (through things like WiMAX) operators would finally set the deployment of broadband networks throughout the country and further lay the foundation for rapid economic growth in the ICT sector.

He said, application of Business Process Outsourcing (BPOs) and Government's decentralization program would enhance various e-government packages which would increase the social-economic development of the citizenry in a manner never witnessed in this country over the past several years.

Quandzie said that the NCA is committed to opening up the market base of the telecommunication industry by offering an additional fiber optic cable operator (WACS), which would add more capacity to the existing one, all within a 24 month period.

According to Quandzie, the current SAT 3 cable systems provides an estimated three gigabytes capacity of international bandwidth to the country at approx systems to become operational, adding that "They will be adding respectively, for a total of 1,920 gigabytes or 640 fold increase to the current capacity of international bandwidth in the country".

Quandzie said that NCA expectation of a supply bandwidth a price goal of $100-500 per E1 should be possible within the very near future which would provide the necessary framework for the attainment of such an outcome.

He concluded that with the right regulatory framework established, reliable and affordable broadband networks, coupled with low cost of available international bandwidth can be provided through undersea fiber optic cables.

The Ghanaian Chronicle