IGF 2019 Pre-Event #37
Landlocked Countries: Turning a Weakness into an Opportunity

Afghanistan Telecommunications Regulatory Agency (ATRA)


One of the key elements of Internet accessibility in developing countries is international connectivity. Internet provisioning relies on basic building blocks, as no Internet governance will exist if not even broadband access is assured. The case of Afghanistan is further complicated as a landlocked country, because international connectivity to submarine cable landing stations or terrestrial fiber networks needs to be achieved through neighboring countries. That is an inherent weakness in itself, because prices for Internet access in landlocked countries are higher and often times supply restrictions condition availability of services.
How can this issue be tackled? Afghanistan has found an ingenious way around it, which effectively turns a weakness into an opportunity. The process is described in the rest of this paper.