A Case For Public Financing Of Broadband Internet Infrastructure In Ghana
Patrick Ohemeng Gyaase, Augustine Takyi
Index Terms: Broadband Infrastructure, bandwidth, fibre optic, Public Financing, Wireless Broadband
Abstracts: Ghana identified Information and Communication Technology as an indispensable tool for economic development in the ICT Policy for Accelerated Development (ICT4AD). Since then several ICT related policies have been adopted among which is The National Communication Policy(Government of Ghana, 2004) and The National Broadband Policy. Since high speed Internet connectivity is key to the suceess of these policies, the targets set these policies may slipby unlesspolicies relating to broadband communication infrastructure and funding strategies are put in place. Lack of funds has been cited as the reason for lack investment in the broadband infrastructure. The government of Ghana has resorted to borrowing and private investment for such vital infrastructure. These methods have evidently not solved the problem of underdeveloped broadband infrastructure. This paper looks at the state of Internet connectivity in Ghana and makes a case for public financing. It then proposes two sustainable funding sources namely the Communication Service Tax (CST) and Proportionate licensing fees scheme. It also outline the likelychallenges to the use of the proposed funding schemes and concludes that a non-credit funding sources such as suggested would yield more benefits from wide spread broadband deployment in Ghana.
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