HIGH INTERNET COST HINMDERING ICT DEVELOPMENT IN KENYA

NAIROBI– The high cost of Internet services in Kenya is hindering the growth of information communications technology (ICT) industries in the country, says Edward Ndichu, the Managing Director of local fintech company Opera Kenya.

He said in an interview that although the internet penetration rate has grown fast, the cost of data remains prohibitive.

Internet penetration stands at 52 per cent in Kenya with mobile penetration clocking 96 per cent of the Kenyan population according to the latest quarterly statistics by the Communications Authority of Kenya. This compares with the relatively low Internet penetration rate of 35 per cent of Africa as a whole.

However, the cost of bandwidth remains prohibitive on the continent hindering the growth of ICT services.

In Kenya, with multiple fiber optic cables, one gigabit of mobile broadband is said to cost an average of 10 per cent of the average monthly income of subscribers, according to the Alliance for Affordable Internet which advocates cheaper Internet services.

Ndichu said the government should provide more incentives to players in the industry to suppress the cost of the services. He added that although broadband prices are coming down, they are not falling fast enough, leaving low income earners and other marginalized populations unable to afford even a basic connection.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK