Rwanda misses December digital TV migration deadline

The New Times reports that officials in Rwanda have blamed challenges in procurement for the country missing the 31 December deadline for TV’s digital migration.

It has been reported that of the five EAC partner states, only Tanzania managed to meet the December migration deadline. (Image: File)

The deadline is said to have been set by the East African Community (EAC), whilst the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) has stipulated 2015 as the international deadline for migration.

According to the New Times the switch from analogue to digital broadcasting is based on rare frequency resource efficiency and facilitates the introduction of additional services including high definition TV and pay TV.

The country is reported to have opened the first tender for the supply of Set Top Boxes, or decoding devices that convert analogue images to digital, last year.

In its article The New Times quotes Jean Baptiste Mutabazi, Head of Communication and Media Regulation at the Rwanda Utility Regulation Authority (RURA), who raised the issue of decoders as part of the problem.

“We have already published the technical specifications of the decoders but what remains is to get investors who can import them,” Mutabazi said.

In October last year an East African Business Week report detailed the concerns of industry experts who warned that low government effort could result in Africa failing to make the 2015 deadline.