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Internet alliance group in Ghana musters fresh challenge

February 7, 2014 • Online, West Africa

Fresh appeals for internet access and lower charges in Ghana. (Image source: DS Land)

Fresh appeals for internet access and lower charges in Ghana. (Image source: DS Land)

The Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI) has reportedly announced its intention to soon launch what it describes as “a Ghanaian multi-stakeholder coalition” in a fresh bid to reduce internet costs in the country.

The Chronicle reported that, according to officials, the new initiative will encourage dialogue, support countries in their efforts to initiate policy change and set the stage for the formation of the coalition.

Gabe Trodd, Communications Advisor at World Wide Web Foundation is quoted by the publication as saying, “The A4AI primary objective is to launch a Ghanaian multi-stakeholder coalition that will contribute towards government policy to bring about affordable internet access.”

The organisation’s objective is to push for affordable access to mobile and fixed-line internet in developing countries. It is comprised of private, public and civil society representatives and is also supported by global sponsors including Google, Omidyar Network, the UK Department for International Development and USAID.

In December 2013 A4AI released an Affordability Report detailing the drivers of internet affordability in 46 developing and emerging countries. According to the Report those living on less than US$2/day, entry-level broadband costs an average of 40% of monthly income and in many countries this figure exceeds 80% or 100%. As a result, billions cannot afford to get online, entrenching the digital divide and constraining economic and social progress.

 

Chris Tredger – Online Editor

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