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Cut broadband Internet service prices, says Paulwell

Published:Tuesday | November 5, 2013 | 12:58 PM

Jovan Johnson, Gleaner Writer



Technology Minister Phillip Paulwell has called for telecommunications operators to cut their prices for broadband Internet service in order to increase access to more Jamaicans.




Paulwell made the call as he addressed the Jamaica Computer Society 40th Anniversary and Lifetime Achievement Awards Banquet recently.



He said Jamaica was losing ground to smaller and larger countries in the region in terms of both fixed and mobile broadband penetration.



Using data from the International Telecommunication Union the technology minister argued that where broadband rates fell, there was a correlating increase in broadband penetration.



Globally, fixed broadband prices dropped by some 82 per cent between 2008 and 2012.



Out of 195 countries, Jamaica ranked 123 in mobile broadband penetration and 95 in fixed broadband penetration rates, placing the country behind many of its CARICOM neighbours.



Paulwell has announced the appointments of two bodies, the Board of Directors of the e-Government Company Jamaica Limited and the National Information Communication Technology (ICT) Advisory Council.



University of the West Indies Professor Evan Duggan was named chairman of the e-Gov board; while Carlton Samuels, an IT Consultant, was named chairman of the ICT Advisory Council.



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