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ATCON SHIFTS GEARS FOR 2011 BROADBAND SUMMIT

By NBF News
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By Emma Elebeke
In realization of its roadmap for a universal access to broadband in Nigeria, the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria, ATCON says it has commenced the first phase of the implementation plan.

The National President of the Association, Engr. Titi-OmoEttu who disclosed this said all is now set for the planned first implementation projects under the roadmap to universal access which is now running and that the association has put every machinery in motion to host the Broadband Investment Summit in Lagos on July 26-27, 2011 in collaboration with Businessworld Communications Ltd.

With the theme: 'Broadband as enabler to connecting the next 50 million Telecom USERS in Nigeria'., he explained that the objective of the summit is to identify opportunities that are available and challenges inherent in growing the market for universal access to broadband internet in Nigeria, just as the summit will articulate the wherewithal to sufficiently engender investment, create access, build a market, remove access barriers, and encourage infrastructure construction to ensure Nigerians begin to enjoy the benefits of today's technologies.

According to him, the summit will be unveiled as three events in one, which includes a high level business discussion, exhibition of available products and services and presentation of an Investors' Book. A document which is being promoted by ATCON as the roadmap to bringing internet access to the last man in Nigeria.

Major sponsors of the summit include the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the Universal Service Provision Fund, (USPF), Google Nigeria, and MainOne Cable Company.

As part of arrangements to draw the attention of core investors into Nigeria, Omo-Ettu disclosed that an investment expert, Mr. Fola Adeola, will be delivering the Lead Paper at the event, with focus on expert's forecast into Nigeria's investment Climate in the next decade, during which 50million USERS are expected to be connected on broadband internet access.

'The Association is concerned that despite the large number of telephone lines recorded, the average Nigerian is yet to get the necessary empowerment which ICT offers today. Therefore the industry's development orientation is shifting from an emphasis on 'connected lines to one of the number of users' of telecommunication services.'

Explaining further, the ATCON President said that participation at the summit will be by special invitation and restricted to only those who have identifiable contribution to make to the process of implementing a workable programme for improving telecommunication access in Nigeria. 'There are other phases and components of the implementation of our roadmap that confront other problems and targeted at different audiences,' he added.