Affordable internet and high speed broadband connection is a dream for every Nigerian whether an individual or a business. This dream may just be closer to becoming a reality. The United Nations Broadband Commission yesterday, at the ongoing World Economic Forum at Davos, adopted the A4ai’s “1 for 2” affordability target
At a joint meeting of the Commission and the World Economic Forum yesterday, the Commission launched a set of seven ambitious 2025 targets designed to connect the 50% of the world still offline and, more widely, to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals set in 2015. Number 2 of that target adopts the A4ai target that 1 GB of data should not be more than 2% of average income.
The Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4ai) has been working very hard in different countries including Nigeria, to ensure that the internet is affordable and accessible for everyone. The “1 for 2” affordability target was first proposed in the A4ai 2015-16 Affordability Report.
Expressing elation at the decision yesterday, the A4ai team said, ‘We are delighted and encouraged to see the UN adopt this target, and to join Nigeria, Ghana and ECOWAS in working toward an affordability threshold that should enable billions more to be able to afford entry-level broadband access.’
Nigeria’s Ministry of Communication earlier in 2017 adopted the target. They are currently working towards ensuring 30% broadband penetration in Nigeria by the end of the year.
The UN Broadband Commission equally listed its 2025 Targets including for all countries to have funded national broadband plans and a call for gender equality across all targets.
Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development 2025 Targets:
- By 2025, all countries should have a funded national broadband plan or strategy, or include broadband in their universal access and services definition.
- By 2025, entry-level broadband services should be made affordable in developing countries, at less than 2% of monthly gross national income per capita.
- By 2025 broadband / Internet user penetration should reach: 75% worldwide, 65% in developing countries, and 35% in least developed countries.
- By 2025, 60% of youth and adults should have achieved at least a minimum level of proficiency in sustainable digital skills.
- By 2025, 40% of the world’s population should be using digital financial services.
- By 2025, unconnectedness of Micro-, Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises should be reduced by 50%, by sector.
- By 2025, gender equality should be achieved across all targets.