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ICT key to economic growth—Macra

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The Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) says Malawi is making progress in ICT penetration due to among others the emergence of mobile communication services in terms of both voice and data.

Macra Board Technical Committee Chairperson Chancy Gondwe said this in Blantyre during the opening of a World Radio Communications 2015 Consultative meeting in Blantyre.

The meeting is part of preparations for the forthcoming World Radio Communication (WRC) 15 Conference which will take place in Geneva, Switzerland in November 2015.

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“The increasing use of mobile services translates to growth in the national economy hence the need to protect some fixed services used for the delivery of such services,” Gondwe said.

Gondwe said ICT has the potential to drive economic growth, observing that most countries that are doing well on the economic front rely on ICT.

Deputy Director at Macra Francis Bisika said the regulatory body recognises that the component of communications is one of the catalysts of economic growth.

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“And one of the key factors to the development of ICT industry is the efficient utilisation of spectrum resources. Therefore, Macra is doing everything possible to make sure that there is efficient use of the spectrum, the very lifeline of all communication services in the country,” he said.

He said Macra has put in place measures to ensure that the country is reducing the gap that was there in as far as access to information is concerned.

“So far, we have successfully rolled out two projects: Spectrum Audit and Re-farming as well as the Television White Spaces (TVWS), in collaboration with the Physics Department of Chancellor College,” he said.

Currently, Malawi is chairing the preparatory process for WRC-15 for the SADC region. WRC-15 is expected to pass resolutions on the agreed agenda items such as protection of fixed services, public protection and disaster relief.

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