July 2015, Issue 21
View this email in your browser

Monthly Newsletter

A4AI Policy Manager Kojo Boakye and Executive Director Sonia Jorge attend the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO)'s annual Broadband Forum in Abuja, Nigeria. Photo credit: CTO

Access and Inclusion Key Focus of CTO Broadband Forum 2015

On June 16-17, over 130 participants from more than a dozen countries attended the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO)'s annual Broadband Forum in Abuja, Nigeria. This year's forum focused on the theme of "Broadband for All: From Access to Inclusion".

A4AI was represented by its executive director, Sonia Jorge, and policy manager, Kojo Boakye. Sonia participated in the event's opening panel, which examined how broadband can enable social and economic development and also featured Matthew Willsher, CEO of Etisalat Nigeria, and Dr. Eugene Juwah, CEO of the Nigerian Communications Commission. Kojo's panel focused on how stakeholders can collaborate to make broadband more accessible and affordable.

At the event, CTO, an A4AI member, also announced that it had appointed Shola Taylor, CEO of Kemilinks International, as the organisation's new secretary-general. Taylor will begin his term this September. 

You can download presentations from the event on CTO's webpage.

A4AI Working with Mozambique Coalition, Government to Lower Cost of ICT Equipment and Devices

The A4AI-Mozambique coalition is currently working with policymakers and other stakeholders to advocate for a submission it presented to the Mozambique tax authority in April, requesting a reduction in the custom duty imposed on ICT equipment and devices.

The coalition had the opportunity to discuss obstacles encountered, and best practices for effectively moving forward during its quarterly meeting in Maputo, the Mozambican capital, on July 9. 

A4AI recommends that Mozambique reduce the custom duty imposed on telecoms equipment and devices from 7.5 percent to 2.5 percent, in order to lower the cost of devices and services, arguing that: 
  • Reducing this cost will stimulate investment in telecoms infrastructure and purchase of Internet-accessible devices and Internet access by individual, business and government users.
  • Increased investment and availability of smart devices will increase penetration of broadband Internet access, thereby reducing costs and promoting efficiency and productivity throughout the Mozambican economy, resulting in significant increases in tax revenue and an estimated addition of $443 million to the GDP by 2019.
Photo caption: Horácio Simão, director of Mozambique's tax authority and A4AI-Mozambique's lead for the Taxation working group, updates the coalition on A4AI's recommendation to reduce custom duties. Credit: A4AI

In this issue: 

Membership & Research UpdateMember Feature Engage with A4AI
A4AI's Annual M&E Report for 2014
Now available to members on our webpage: 

Membership Update

We are excited to announce that the Web Foundation has signed an MOU with the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)

A4AI and ECLAC plan to collaborate on technical and research activities related to the development of ICTs and their contribution to social and economic development in the LAC region. 

As part of this partnership, A4AI will participate in ECLAC's Ministerial Conference for the Information Society in Mexico City, August 5-7. 

Research Update

Welcoming A4AI's New Research Manager

We are pleased to introduce Dhanaraj Thakur to A4AI members and partners! As Research Manager, he will be directing A4AI’s research programme.

Dhanaraj has over 10 years of experience designing and leading research projects on ICT policy and regulation, gender and ICTs, and the socio-economic impacts of ICTs in developing countries. Prior to joining the A4AI team, Dhanaraj held faculty positions at both Tennessee State University and the University of the West Indies, and worked on community development with the government of Jamaica.

Member Feature: Internet Society's Global Internet Report 2015

The Internet Society recently released its 2015 Global Internet Report,  the organisation’s second annual report on the global state of the Internet.

Focused on the impact of the mobile Internet, this year’s report shows that mobile has fundamentally transformed Internet access and use, and holds the key to fulfilling the promise of Internet connectivity for the next billion people.

Some of the report's highlights include: 
  • 94% of the global population is covered by a mobile network, 48% are covered by mobile broadband, and 28% have subscribed to mobile Internet services.
  • The gap between availability and adoption of mobile Internet is due to affordability and lack of relevant content. Policymakers should focus on filling this gap by making the services more affordable by removing taxes on equipment, devices, and services, and eliminating regulatory barriers for operators. Local hosting of content can also help lower costs by avoiding the use of relatively expensive international capacity to access content.
Engage with A4AI! 
Upcoming Events 

All members are invited to attend our presentations, panels, and forums. If you are interested in scheduling a meeting with our team at any of the below events, please e-mail  
July 16

Internet Governance Forum USA

George Washington University

Washington, DC
*A4AI Executive Director Sonia Jorge will be speaking on a panel

July 23

A4AI Advisory Council Meeting for Q3 of 2015. 

Remote via WebEx

July 27-28

A4AI-Myanmar Coalition Meeting & Workshop on Universal Service Fund

Yangon, Myanmar
August 5-7

UN ECLAC's Ministerial Conference for the Information Society in Latin America & the Caribbean

Mexico City, Mexico
*Sonia Jorge and A4AI LAC Coordinator Yacine Khelladi will be participating. 

September 15-16 (Tentative)

A4AI-Dominican Republic Coalition Meeting & Workshop on Infrastructure Sharing

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

September 22-23

NigeriaCom Conference 

Lagos, Nigeria

Get the latest affordability news and updates by following us on social media: 
CC BY, 2015 World Wide Web Foundation

Mailing address
1110 Vermont Ave. NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20005

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Visit us at