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Dec 6, 2011

Regional Competitiveness needs VOIP

Mike Singh

Delegates from across the region attended the two-day seminar that also focused on Innovation in the Service Sector while looking at opportunities for the Caribbean. The Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) Network is a network of policy makers responsible for science and technology policy in Latin American and Caribbean countries. The STI Network forums are attended by IDB member countries to discuss common policy issues related to the performance of their networks. To strengthen STI’s, human capital as well as Voice Over Internet Protocol VOIP, is necessary for the region and Belize.

Flora Montealegre Painter, IDB Science and Tech. Division Chief

“Well we discussed many of the issues as well as the opportunities in the services sector. I think a couple of the things that came out very, very strongly are the issues of human capital. I think it is very clear that human resource is a critical component of any successful development strategy in the services sector and I think it is one of the areas where we hope to be able to continue to work with the countries of the Caribbean.”

Mike Singh, Board Member, Caribbean Export Development Agency

“And if I can add to that as well, one of the big themes that came out today is the need for better and less expensive broadband services to act as a platform for delivery of internet based services to the rest of the world. The Caribbean and Belize has always been very strong on tourism—we’ve spent a lot of time developing tourism systems and growing our tourism market. That was done because there was a lot of work being done building airports, building connections with airlines, cruise lines and it was generally felt today there need to be a better relationship built with the technology providers so that the information super highway can be built so that we can also get some of those services out to the rest of the world.”

Jules Vasquez

“If I may, Mister Singh, with that telecommunications or bandwidth expansion include the allowing VOIP?”

Mike Singh

“Well Belize is fairly unique on that one front. The rest of the Caribbean COIP is fairly open. I think it is very clear, Telemedia participated today, and I was made to understand that there has been a directive to not do any blockage of VOIP in Belize. Not to say that it is something that is being promoted, but from what I understand, there is going to be a move towards liberalization. The Prime Minister at the forum two weeks ago made it clear that he understands it is an imperative; however, the debt obligations that the government will face with the acquisition of Telemedia that the sustainability plan for Telemedia has to take priority and at some point in time, the move towards liberalization of VOIP has to go in line with a plan to make sure that B.T.L. is sustainable and able to meet its obligations.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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5 Responses for “Regional Competitiveness needs VOIP”

  1. islander says:

    Come on if I am paying so much money for the internet I expect to be able to use everything that the internet has to offer…

  2. PG Gial says:

    Everywhere else in the world people can use VOIP except Belize!! I really think that’s a shame.

  3. Eye in the Sky says:

    We need minimum of 20 Mbps for no more than $20.

    Then give the people a free computer for each home.

  4. Grant says:

    Well said Islander. Our intenet rates are obscene for the speeds we get, and then no VOIP. Makes international business even more expensive, and gives many other countries an advantage over us.

  5. Elgin Martinez says:

    Nothing is regulated in the Jewel as a result the exploitation of our people will continue .

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