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Abu @ almaty

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Presented at ESCAP event in Almaty.

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Abu @ almaty

  1. 1. Making Central Asia central to Asia’s Internet Abu Saeed Khan Senior Policy Fellow LIRNEasia @ High-level Regional Roundtable on Telecommunications Connectivity in Central Asia Almaty, Kazakhstan June 3, 2014
  2. 2. Postcard from Africa (1) • In Africa, 35 of the 48 countries have no competition among national fiber providers. • Eight have limited competition – that is, two providers besides the mobile companies, usually the incumbent fixed-line operator and either the government or the electricity transmission company. • Only five countries (Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe) can be said to have effective competition among multiple players. In countries that lack effective competition, fiber connectivity in cities that are far removed from submarine cable landing stations often costs five or six times as Source: Analysys Mason, April 2014 much as it does at the landing station
  3. 3. Postcard from Africa (2) Source: Analysys Mason, April 2014
  4. 4. Problems in Africa’s terrestrial networks • Fiber not being buried deep enough – Frequent physical damage (accidental and deliberate). • Poor quality splicing – Intermittent faults and reduction in throughput • Poor maintenance of manholes – Leads to flooding and cable damage. • Poor systems and processes for fault management – Sometimes the maintenance companies deliberately sabotage cables to create work for themselves. Source: Philip Bates, Analysys Mason, April 2014
  5. 5. Central Asia largely mirrors Africa
  6. 6. The Internet of Kazahkstan is served by numerous providers. Kazakhtelecom is the dominant incumbent while smaller ISPs such as Asket, Smartnet and Orbita-Plus are competing. Nearly all international transit for Kazakhstan comes through Russia, specifically from the major Russian providers (Rostelecom, Transtelecom, RETN, Megafon and Vimpelcom).
  7. 7. The Internet of Kyrgyzstan is served by several providers including incumbent KyrgyzTelecom and mobile providers SkyMobile and Megacom. International transit primarily comes through Kazakh providers Kaztranscom and Kazakhtelecom.
  8. 8. Turkmenistan is, by far, the smallest of the Internets in central Asia. All connections to the outside world go through TurkmenTelecom. When TurkmenTelecom suffers an outage, as it did earlier this year, the country is completely without Internet service.
  9. 9. Tajikistan is served by a handful of providers including incumbent Tojiktelecom, and Tajikistan's largest mobile provider Babilon-T. Tajikistan gets international transit through Kyrgyzstan, Kazahkstan and Russia. In recent years, Tojiktelecom used a connection through China, but it isn't visible currently.
  10. 10. All connections within and outside Uzbekistan must pass through Uzbektelecom. Such centrality makes Uzbekistan’s Internet fragile. Source: Renesys Corp.
  11. 11. $2.86 $15 $20 >$100 >$100 >$100 >$100 $312 Uzbekistan: Wholesale IP transit price/Mbps/month in Q4 2013 (Terabit Consulting) "Beeline is offering LTE for USD1,200 per month, including unlimited data usage, 1,000 minutes of calls and 1,000 SMS to all networks in Uzbekistan. The price tag puts the service well out of reach of most, with a typical graduate salary in Uzbekistan netting less than USD400 per month." Commsupdate, Sept. 5, 2014.
  12. 12. Uzbekistan: An unfinished revolution • December 10, 2004: Uzbekenergo and Uzbekistan Railway were granted licenses for five years to “provide long distance telecommunication services” ensuring “access to its networks for other operators and providers on equal terms”. • November 4, 2009: Both the licenses were extended for further five years (i.e., until December 12, 2014). • Neither of the license is yet to be functional! What’s the status of remaining Central Asia?
  13. 13. Cross-border multi-sector infrastructure sharing by the oil-rich countries Middle East-Europe Terrestrial System (MEETS) initially provides connectivity between the U.A.E., Qatar, Bahrain, and Kuwait over a fiber pair acquired from the power grid of GCC Interconnection Authority. First phase RFS is Q3 2014 at a cost of $36 million. The second phase would extend connectivity to Turkey via Iraq. The consortium members include du, Vodafone Qatar, Zajil, and Zain. Source: TeleGeography
  14. 14. Investing in Different Network Layers Source: The state of Broadband 2012: Achieving digital inclusion for all. ITU/UNESCO Broadband Commission.

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