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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Samoa now full member of CTO

The Pacific island and Commonwealth country, Samoa has become a full-member of the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO), reports ITRealms.

The country’s decision, ITRealms gathered was conveyed to Secretary-General, Mr. Shola Taylor by the country’s Minister of Communications & Information Technology, Honourable Afamasaga Lepuiai Rico Tupa’i.

ITRealms also reports that in recent years, Samoa has increased efforts to integrate Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) in its socio-economic development.
Samoa’s Internet penetration has grown nearly five-fold to 30 per cent over the past 10 years, just as its fixed broadband access remains a key challenge at a much lower two per cent. But the country remains committed to affordable, reliable and secure communications services for all Samoans and sees its membership of the CTO as one means to achieve this goal.

“We have the potential to turn Samoa into one good example of an inclusive e-society and drawing from the experiences from other countries will contribute to achieving this goal,” Tupa’i said.

ITRealms gathered that full Member Countries are Commonwealth countries that make an annual financial contribution to the CTO.

Reacting to Samoa’s decision, Mr Taylor said that “although it may be too soon to say, this announcement shows that our drive to address the needs of small island nations is increasingly well received.”

“With their limited economies of scale and the higher roll-out costs associated with island countries, most of them face much bigger challenges in achieving universal access to ICT infrastructure, products and services. One of our strategic objectives is to work with the rest of our membership and the wider ICT sector to find solutions to the challenges faced by this specific group,” Mr Taylor had also said earlier this year.

Chuks Dom/GEE

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Pix: Third from left: The Honourable Afamasaga Lepuiai Rico Tupa’i taking part in discussions during the Forum.

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