The Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI) has named Rwanda for the second time as the country with the most affordable internet in the Least Developed Countries (LDC).
The 2015-16 Affordability Report looks at the affordability environment across 51 countries, considers the effects of poverty and income inequality and takes a close look at gender inequality in access.
“Rwanda is the highest ranked LDC in this year’s ADI. Its success is due, in part, to the ambitious policies the country is pursuing. The SMART Rwanda Master Plan 2015-2020 (PDF), builds on the previous National Information and Communication Infrastructure (NICI) plans, and puts ICTs — especially broadband — at the heart of the national socio-economic development agenda,” reads the report in part.
Rwanda tops the sub Saharan Africa list for two consecutive years followed by Uganda, Gambia and Tanzania.
According to the report, the A4AI’s Affordability Drivers Index looks at the policies, incentives, and infrastructure investments in place across 51 developing and emerging countries, and assesses the extent to which they are being implemented.
Rwanda aims to become a knowledge-driven, middle income country by 2020, with ICT as a central engine to fast-track the country’s transformation. Initiatives like Smart Rwanda are driving this transformation by providing affordable internet.
Meanwhile, the report recommended that countries develop and work toward a more ambitious affordability target, reduce the cost of mobile phones and ICT devices, increase investment in and availability of public, subsidized access, create specific, time-bound targets to close the gender digital divide, and integrated approach to policymaking, among others.
A4AI is the world’s broadest technology sector coalition with over 70 members, including technology corporations Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, Facebook, and Ericson.Follow https://twitter.com/Julio_Bizimungu