October 7, 2013 – WISAT participated in the launch of The Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI), a coalition of public, private and civil society organizations aiming to lead policy and regulatory reform and spur action to drive down artificially high internet prices in developing countries. Sophia Huyer represented WISAT as a member of the Advisory Council of the Alliance, which was launched at the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation’s Annual Forum in Abuja, Nigeria.
By advocating for open, competitive and innovative broadband markets, A4AI aims to help access prices fall to below 5% of monthly income worldwide, a target set by the UN Broadband Commission. Reaching this goal can help to connect the two-thirds of the world that is presently not connected to the internet (source: ITU) and make universal access a reality. Upcoming activities include:
- In-country engagements with three to four States by the end of 2013, expanding to at least twelve countries by the end of 2015.
- Promoting a set of policy best practices (enclosed) that will guide advocacy work at the international level. They include allowing innovative allocation of spectrum, promoting infrastructure sharing, and increasing transparency and public participation in regulatory decisions.
- An annual ‘Affordability Report’, with the first edition being unveiled in December 2013.
WISAT is represented on the A4AI Advisory Council by Executive Director Sophia Huyer. To see her presentation on Gender and ICT Policy and Regulation, click here.