Three-day ITU Workshop and Focus Group Meeting on “Cost Models for Affordable Data Services & International Connectivity” begins in New Delhi

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International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) are jointly organizing Workshop on “Cost Models for Data Services & International Connectivity” on 4th October followed by the first meeting of ITU-T Focus Group on “Cost Models for Data Services & International Connectivity” to be held on 5th and 6th October, 2023 in New Delhi.  The Workshop was inaugurated today by Ms. Meenakshi Gupta, Acting Chairperson of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India. The objective of the Workshop is to share best practices and study cost models and other tools which can be used by countries to consider and implement so as to bring down costs of data services and internet connectivity.

This workshop had four sessions, which dealt with topics such as Cost components for data services and main factors affecting the affordability of data services, best practices for cost models for data services, evolving Internet Value chain and implications for cost for International Internet connectivity (IIC), Regulatory, economic, and policy aspects impacting cost models for IIC and lessons learnt. 

The speakers at this workshop include eminent experts representing many leading regulatory organizations, government ministries, Experts from ITU (International Telecommunication Union), World bank, industry leaders, leading service providers from both India and abroad. 

Data has become the new necessity for every individual. There are various challenges in providing digital connectivity to everyone, especially in rural and remote areas. The ITU/UNESCO Broadband Commission’s affordability target for entry level broadband services was set at below 2% of monthly GNI per capita for middle and low income countries by 2025 – a target which many still have not reached.  First session deliberated on the main challenges with regards to the factors affecting the cost of data.

Next session was dedicated to discuss the different cost modelling techniques used for data services in different regions, the cost components used in the cost models, impact of different economic incentives provided by government and the lessons learned.

Another session examined some of the cost components and challenges for costing models for IIC for developing economics. The tariff experts and economists added value to the discussions by sharing a wide spectrum of issues relating to regulatory, economic and policy issues impacting cost models for International Internet Connectivity and the best practices being followed.

This Workshop was held in hybrid mode with participation from all across the world, with more than 200 participants from 42 countries. About 21 International delegates are attending this Workshop and Focus Group meeting in person.  All the six regions of ITU have been represented at this workshop with their proactive participation.



Source PIB