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Regional News of Monday, 18 July 2011

Source: GNA

Fixed-line telephones are still relevant – Dr Frempong

Accra, July 18, GNA – Fixed–line telephones in Ghana need strong and innovative policy interventions to revamp the sector, Dr Godfred Frempong a senior research fellow at the Science and Technology Policy Research Institute (STEPRI) has advocated.

Referring to sections of the Ghana Information Communication Technology Sector Performance Review 2009/2010 report of which he was the lead researcher, Dr Frempong told the Ghana News Agency on Monday that the interventions should explore ways of increasing investment in the subsector to expand the coverage, and improve the quality of the infrastructure.

He said fixed-line telephones should be included in the list of the priority sector to benefit from incentives under the Ghana Investment Promotion Act.

Dr Frempong said analyses showed that the deployment of fixed-line telephones had been slow and between 2003 and 2008, the subsector experienced a negative compound average growth rate of 13.1, while that of mobile telephones was 70.8 percent.

He said, “Although wireless technology had increasingly replaced fixed-lines as the infrastructure for Internet, the wireless technology had its own problems-instability of signals, interference and the issue of points of preference make fixed-lines telephones necessary”.

Dr Frempong said mobile technology had the potential to realize the information society aspirations of states, but no single communication technology could support the information society.

This he added required the combination of technologies and argued for more attention to given to develop the fixed-line telephone infrastructure.

He said the explosion of submarine fibre cables terminating in Ghana, as well as the national terrestrial fibre backbone network might require a very good fixed-line telephone infrastructure.

STEPRI is an affiliate of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

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