The Role of ICT in Advancing Growth in Least Developed Countries

Trends, Challenges and Opportunities

image of The Role of ICT in Advancing Growth in Least Developed Countries

This report shows that, while LDCs are, by definition, particularly burdened by severe structural impediments to growth, progress is possible. It introduces the cases of the three countries that have graduated from the LDC status since the category was established (Botswana, Cape Verde and Maldives), as well as those of five countries in the Pacific region, facing the special challenges of being Small Island Developing States (SIDS): Kiribati, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. The case studies overview the progress made by each country in improving telecommunication and ICTconnectivity and establishing an enabling regulatory framework for the deployment of this infrastructure. The report also examines the impact of ICT in promoting socio-economic development in these countries and presents lessons and remaining challenges.



Current status of ICT and telecommunications in LDCs

During the past two decades, the regulatory environment of telecommunications has undergone multiple transformations. Although the patterns are diverse and vary from country to country and region to region, overarching global developments are visible and influence policy at the national level. After many decades of state monopoly, since the 1980s an increasing number of countries have pursued policies of privatization, market liberalization, and independent regulation. Countries with a stronger and more stable state tended to be more successful in managing these transitions.


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