CA DG Francis Wangusi, ICT Cabinet Secretary Dr.Fred Matiang’i and CA chairman Ngene Gituku at the 10
th African Spectrum Management Workshop that kicked off on Wednesday.

The efficient utilization of the spectrum for socio-economic transformation of Africa was the focus of discussions at the three-day 10th African Spectrum Management workshop that ends in Nairobi today.

Kenya’s ICT Cabinet Secretary Dr.Fred Matiang’i told delegates from African countries that broadband held the key to accelerated economic growth for African countries and therefore the need to address challenges associated with its usage.  ‘‘Looking at the increasing contribution of ICTs to the GDPs of our economies, then we must redouble our efforts to boost broadband which is poised to become a key platform for innovation,’’ said Dr.Matiang’i.

He said Kenya will allocate the excess spectrum arising from the migration from analogue to digital television broadcasting to the implementation of mobile broadband systems. 

CA DG, Francis Wangusi, while acknowledging challenges in implementation of high-speed spectrum because of associated costs, urged African countries to find ways of lowering the cost of smart devices to enable more users to access broadband. “Africa must have a policy to ensure devices are manufactured to suit the demands of our citizens,’’ said Mr. Wangusi.

Kenya is currently collaborating with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to undertake a study that will help develop a pro-competition framework for market based spectrum management in Kenya to enhance optimal utilization of the scarce resource.

The African Union on its part called for a reduction in the cost of the Internet by cutting that of spectrum.
"Countries within the continent must lower Internet costs; demand for spectrum is increasing with time and regulation also becomes an issue," said Ms Souhila Amazouz, senior policy officer for radio communications at the union.