[Communications Commission of Kenya] More than 1,100 sub-locations in Kenya (out of a total of 7,149) lack access to voice telephony services.
According to statistics released by the Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) today, only 893 sub-locations in the country have access to broadband data/Internet services, with a total of 85,000 broadband subscribers.
These statistics are part of the ICT Access Gaps Study findings released to stakeholders at a Nairobi hotel today. The Study, aimed at assisting CCK in developing the most appropriate framework for provision of affordable ICT services, was carried out by Apoyo Consultoria of Peru, South America.
According to the study, less than five percent of people living in rural areas use the Internet in spite of growth in the number of internet users from 1.7 million in 2007 to 10 million in June 2011. In most counties, Internet usage stands at below five per cent.
Mobile penetration grew by an average of 31% annually from 34% in 2007 to 65% by June 2011. Mobile subscribers on the other hand increased from 11 million in 2007 to 25million in June 2011.
At the sub-location level, more than 50% of the population uses mobile phones, with sub-locations in Nairobi, Kiambu and Nyeri counties leading with mobile telephone usage of about 70%.
In the postal/courier market, all counties have at least three PCK offices.
The main obstacles for increasing coverage in un-served areas include the high operation and maintenance costs occasioned mainly by lack of electricity, access to roads and cable vandalism. The Study identified low population, and high licence and spectrum fees as additional obstacles to universal access to voice and data services.
Opening the workshop, Information and Communications Permanent Secretary Bitange Ndemo said the Government would soon put in place the requisite policy interventions to address the access gaps identified in the Study.
He said the Government has facilitated international broadband connectivity and the construction of national terrestrial broadband network with a view to transforming Kenya to a knowledge economy. The remaining challenge, added Dr. Ndemo, is to expand broadband infrastructure to cover the last mile.
The PS challenged the Commission to explore mechanisms to spur the usage of the available broadband connectivity for e-learning and other socio-economic activities. He said the Postal Corporation of Kenya and the courier industry in general would benefit from enhanced business opportunities in light of impending uptake of e-commerce in the country.
Addressing workshop participants, acting CCK Director-General Francis Wangusi said the ICT Access Gap Study was part of the wider CCK initiative towards evidence-based regulation.
CCK releases ICT Access Gaps Study results