Thursday, March 25, 2010

CRASA - ‘Impact Assessment important in telecommunications system development’

[chronicle] IMPACT Assessment (IA) is an essential step in the development of telecommunications systems in the Southern African region as it prepares the evidence for decision makers on the pros and cons of making various policies, a telecommunications expert has said.

In his presentation at a three-day Communications Regulator’s Association of Southern Africa (Crasa) workshop being held here, the telecommunications regulatory advisor, Mr Eric Borgstrain, said: “Impact assessment enables the regulatory authorities to make better policies and laws and explains why actions are necessary and facilitates better informed decision making among other things.”

He said the southern Africa regulators should embrace IA.

In his presentation, an independent telecommunications policy analyst, Mr Evan Sutherland, told the delegates that IA helped eliminate unnecessary and burdensome regulations.

“There is a need for constant review of policies in order to continuously meet the needs of the consumers,” he said.

Crasa operations manager Ms Bridget Linzie said it was being acknowledged that IA was
an effective tool for modern, evidence-based policy-making that facilitates for structured framework for handling policy challenges.

“It is also being advised that these IA should be embedded in all our policy and regulation making process.”

Ms Linzie took time to note that the global realisation that Information Communication and Technologies (ICTs) were an integral part of the social and economic development brought in the need for an efficient telecommunications system.

“Even our own governments have come to an agreement that ICTs are tools that will allow us to achieve the millennium development goals. While our business has understood that it is the telecomm system, through effective information and communication exchange, that has brought in business efficiencies and growth. In addition the telecoms system has rendered decision making more effective and extended the markets to global magnitude,” she said.

More than 100 delegates drawn from different Sadc countries are meeting in Victoria Falls for an impact assessment workshop, which is running under the theme: “Promoting a change in Sadc culture in policy and regulation making”.
The meeting continues today.

‘Impact Assessment important in telecommunications system development’

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