Analysts across Africa are looking at the current East African Communications Organizations (EACO) meeting in Rwanda with much optimism and hope that it will drive the technology and telecom sector forward across the continent.
Some 300 telecom companies, regulators and other telecom and technology participants will be on hand for the meeting, the 18th of its kind, that opened in Kigali on Monday.
“Let us hope that this meeting will see a lot of cooperation and discussion between all parties involved,” said John Mmbato, a South African IT expert who was in Kigali for the meeting.
The goal of the five-day meeting will be to examine how companies and regulators can begin to work across country lines in order to create a better structure for telecom and other technology-based infrastructure development to take place in East Africa.
Ignace Gatare, the Rwandan Minister in the President’s Office in Charge of ICT, opened the meeting with a hopeful statement on creating regional practices that enhance competition in the ICT sector.
“It is through regional synergies and cooperation that we can comfortably fully harness the power of ICT to drive our economic development and serve as an engine for effective integration,” he stated in comments published by allafrica.com.
He added that the companies present and the efforts that have already been made by East African nations to develop their telecom and Internet sectors is an important step toward further development in the region.
“We need concerted and innovative policies adapted for regional network interconnections, integration, pricing strategies and flexible tax regimes,” he noted.
By Jonathan Terry