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IGF 2017 - Day 2 - Room XII - OF61 Fostering Internet Usage In Afghanistan Via Regulatory Measures

 

The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the Twelfth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Geneva, Switzerland, from 17 to 21 December 2017. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the event, but should not be treated as an authoritative record. 

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>> UnIdentified Speaker:  We are going to get started in one minute.

[ PAUSE ]

>> Marilyn Cade:  I will be serving as the moderator for Afghanistan governance open forum today.  It's my honor to serve in this capacity and I will primarily be doing the sort of administrative coordination.  Let me first of all welcome all of you and our online participants to the Afghanistan open forum, the very first which I think is an absolutely fantastic addition to other participation that they have engaged in at other IGFs and at this particular IGF, IGF2017.  I'd like to remind everybody that open forums are the opportunity for IGOs and governments to talk about what they are doing.  They operate under different rules and guidelines ‑‑ they developed (audio fading in and out).

>> Marilyn:  Having said that, I would like to welcome all of you and to say how much I appreciate ‑‑ how much I appreciate the opportunity to act as a moderator.

When you speak, you must get very close to the microphones.  Because we are being transcribed.  There will be a permanent transcription and we are also being webcast and I think we are ‑‑ right?  In realtime.  So there will also be the ability to access the presentation afterward.  And the PowerPoint presentation that Dr. Azizi will use will be available online as part of the IGF records.  And having now moved us to the actual intellectual part of the session, I would like to introduce the chairman of the Afghanistan telecommunications regulatory authority, ATRA, Dr. Azizi.  I ask you to please (audio fading in and out).

>>  Dr. Azizi:  Thank you very much.  (Audio fading in and out) beneficial of the telecommunications and information technology.  We will have very interactive (audio cutting out).

>> Marilyn:  Thank you, Dr. Azizi.  I think we should open with your presentation ‑‑ ask you to ‑‑ it's displayed on the video here on the board behind us.  If we could start with the presentation and perhaps what you would like to see if opening key priority either at the beginning of your presentation or at the end we can come back to that.  Start with the presentation now.

>> Dr. Azizi:  Thank you very much.  Tell common authority ‑‑ all the stakeholders, in particular in information and technology.  We have envisioned in the next five years we would like to have 50 percent of the population online.  We have to work on multi ‑‑ in order to ensure that we provide the infrastructure which is required for achieving this goal and also we have to work out different other related components to make sure that we have all the impact and we have them on track.  That's why speak being how we can foster the Internet usage in Afghanistan and the focus on my presentation will be on the regulatory measures that ‑‑ enabling environment tools required to enable the advantage and use, Internet and effective manner.

Now, extraordinary country very different from the rest of the world ‑‑ however, there are certainly technologies which makes the environment for us a bit difficult on how to improve the situation.  The first thing is the geographical situation of Afghanistan.  Infrastructure of the fiberoptic network.  And then the lack of the basic services in terms of the other relevant infrastructures, in particular electricity makes it difficult to improve the situation.

Likewise, 2/3 of the population of Afghanistan lives in other areas, which means that they are not in the urban areas where the population add ‑‑ country is landlocked and that's why.  We were talking about the procurement of the value from the supplies always a huge challenge for us.  We have to go through many countries and use not only our own to get there but also dependent on the land around of other countries.  Likewise, local content is very important in order to bring online.  Very difficult to have them survive by watching only videos.  We have to create more local content to make sure that people get online.  And other challenges the high level of digital literacy that we have got in Afghanistan.  So with this background that I mentioned, the whole purpose is that I would like to describe and analyze the effects of the different regulatory measures that we have taken in order to improve and foster the Internet usage in Afghanistan.

Again, I will try to focus on one very important measure that we have recently undertaken and that is the Open Access Policy.  Now we all know that there are different definitions and understanding from the open access, however the more common is the possibility for the tech parties in order to use the existing network infrastructure.  Now, there are other definitions also, which employ different extent of the openness.  However, there is general agreement that open access applies to the infrastructure.  And model of access differs from country to country and region to region.  However, open access is paramount in order to avoid falling back into monopoly.

Ladies and gentlemen, the emerging consensus is you should be open access to initial broadband infrastructure.  Even in highly developed markets we have seen the scale and scope of investment that's required for the broadband tend to create a dominant provider.  Fiber access pipes represent an essential utility end.  Infrastructure is neither commercially nor economically viable and usually there is some sort of natural monopoly that exists in this field.  A monopoly on the infrastructure particularly in the rural areas and developing countries seems sensible.  Rather than encouraging infrastructure competition the regulatory actions by the governing bodies for the networks should focus on ensuring access on four reasonable and nondiscriminatory terms.  I would like to draw your attention to this map that Afghanistan is geographically a landlocked country.  However, there is a lot of attention for Afghanistan to become the bridge for the countries and even for the Middle East it goes all the way to Europe.  Fiber network is the future and also brings efficiency and what we have seen with the submarine tubules in particular in Egypt, other factors do give the advantage for the fiber networks.

Now, digital silicon is an idea that the government has been working for the last several years and just last month in Afghanistan we had the RICA7 conference where the original countries were attending and we had very productive discussions on the implementation of the different fiber optics in the region to ensure we have the data.  It is obviously there is a continued demand from the commercial providers between far east end Europe.  And it is driving interest in new and diverse around the regions.  Pakistan (audio fading in and out) digital group is (audio fading in and out) digital culture is to ensure it will provide ultimate ‑‑ given environment which is conducive for the private investment and we could provide the low cost and high capacity value of the region.  And then above all Afghanistan do require the domestic penetration and utilization of this opportunity.  And all these companies are ‑‑ enabling environment strategic investment will create infrastructure to position Afghanistan as a strategic hub on the digital world that connects sound south and central Asia with the Middle East.

The objective of the Open Access Policy Afghanistan is to facilitate investment end in the ICT sector to encourage provision of the broad‑based services in the underserved areas, to provide competition in the fiber optic broadband models and lastly open access to basic active and passive infrastructures in a transparent manner and without discrimination.

Now, to look into the realities, the Open Access Policy enables us to give opportunity for the private companies and then also to the partnerships, public, private partnerships a new opportunity to enable also the public sector entities to do their business in a more trans parent manner.  It also enables us to bring new entrance into the market and I will be giving you a couple examples in how we are doing this.  Gateways and Internet exchange points to private competition, price negotiation, and operation by the private and public sector actors.  Do not have any IT experience in Afghanistan, expecting in the next year is to the public sector, however there is huge potential for the private investment and it is again one of the roads we have taken to ensure we provide fair play opportunity to private investors to come forward and join in this effort.

Open Access Policy we're also creating ICT sector where monopolies are not allowed.

And lastly taces the opportunity to provide affordable reliable and good quality broadband services to the average citizens.

Ladies and gentlemen, the Open Access Policy by itself has got ‑‑ until there is the implementation of it.  With Afghanistan in August 2016 we introduce Open Access Policy to the multistakeholder consultation where we were invited Civil Society, mobile operators, ISPs, and we identified there should be three stage implementation of the Open Access Policy.  We finalized the policy in the first stage.  Second stage we started drafting regulations in regard to the open access.  Likewise, in the second stage we invited different interested parties to submit their proposals in the deployment of fiber across the country.  And also 2018 we'll make available additional spectrum for the mobile operators in order to ensure in order broadband services in the country.  We are in the second stage and we're looking forward to the third stage in next year which means there will be more of infrastructure sharing.  There will be more efforts on the local content which luckily Mr. Howell will speak on this.  And then it is very logical to understand that the private investment was profitability for them.  That's why the effective use of the universal access fund is important for the development in department of fiber in the rural areas where we may not have a good business case.  Establishment of more ISPs in order to avoid local traffic to go all the way internationally and then also the quality of service enforcement.  It is very important that we provide the end users the service that they are paying for and they should be able to utilize it in the best manner.

Now, approaches is a need to be flexible for the regulators.  Based on the demand of the market.  And the market demand is different ‑‑ there is always problem.  And then we have to assist the reasonable requirements of the users.  I would very much emphasize local content.  Until we bring local content it will be very difficult to engage and bring all Afghans online.  We are working in three different dimensions of coverage, performance, and affordability in order to foster connectivity of Afghans.

When we started implementation of the open access policy we wanted to make sure that we provide the opportunity to the private investment to come and help us out.  Therefore on August 22nd, we requested from different investors based on very specific criteria in order to develop the fiber optic infrastructure in Afghanistan.  Luckily we have received five very responsive proposals.  Three of the companies are from the U.S.  One is from United Arab Emirates and the one is a local company.  And just before coming to the IGF I had the opportunity to present it to the subcommittee of the cabinet, which is high economic council of Afghanistan and shared by the president of the company.  Presented my approach and hopefully in the next two weeks I will be able to initialize.

When we are talking about fiber infrastructure, bigger challenge is the right of (?)

(Audio fading in and out) networks and broadband deployments will require successfully broadband networks in Afghanistan.  As I mentioned that 2018 will be the year we will make available more spectrum to mobile operators in order to make sure that the broad‑based services Afghanistan get more enhanced and also authorize the ability has identified and also allocated the IT spectrum bands and under the initial frequency allegation table and again it was in consultation with this sector in particular the mobile operators.  There is good news that the inspection for the mobile broadband is ‑‑ spectrum 50ering hertz and TTD will be 190 megahertz.

Let me take this opportunity and share with you that this is my second time that I'm coming to the IGF and I think there is a lot of potential that we on one hand exchange ideas but also there is a lot of learning opportunities in particular for the regulators and IT sector.  In the United States of America have been announcing and facilitating continual partnership with the ‑‑ have officials to exchange the ideas in answer to promote the projects in the policies that we're undertaking what is the move forward for Afghanistan?  I think in the context of the infrastructure, developing also it is very important that we should have appropriate regulations, market from the end.  Look into the ‑‑ end users.  Poor countries and affordability is of importance to us.  Likewise it is very vital for that we move forward and in a quicker manner in the licensing process of the full spectrum.  ISPs play an important role in making the Internet affordable and I think we will be able to engage more private investment in this area and will enable us to be mobile.  Likewise (audio fading in and out).

More fiber means that we will have ease, it will be successful launch of the (audio fading in and out) working on a number of different initiatives.  The spaces, projects we are working.  Also working with a couple of Internet service providers of Afghanistan on how to use the electricity cables going in order to make sure we get ‑‑ now, there could be a number of challenges that may become bottleneck for us.  The security situation is one of the many factors that may cause change to us.  And regional libraries that are in countries we very much hope it will not affect negatively, however the possibilities is always there.  The good news is that Afghanistan is an emerging economy.  We have got very enlightened human capital.  We're committed, honest and we're devoted to serve the country.  And the political improve.  Of the IT sector is very visible.  The projects and this government can support and their willingness to help us and it is very important that regulations be market foster enhance and make sure that the cities in Afghanistan give affordable services.  Thank you very much.

[ APPLAUSE ]

>> Marilyn:  Thank you very much, Dr. Azizi.  I am now going to give the floor to Omar Ansari who is the ‑‑ Omar has a very interesting interest in doing business in Afghanistan but also in the region and also leads the important changes that are happening in increasing multistakeholder engagement in some of these areas.  I'm going to ask him to speak for no more than five minutes and then I will introduce our next private sector speaker and then we will go to ‑‑

>> Haven't had a chance to ask questions.

>> Marilyn:  I understand that.

>> UnIdentified Speaker.  We should be able to ask questions.  We can find his presentation online.

>> Marilyn:  I intend to take questions after all the speakers after they've all spoken because it is a unified presentation.

>> Thank you so much, and good afternoon.  It's so good to be to be on a panel that with Dr. Azizi, director general of ICT and from the AWCC.  We often don't get the chance to speak with each other in Afghanistan but ‑‑ organize such a fantastic for the first time at IGF.  I think we should continue doing that in the future as well.  When we go back to Afghanistan continue this dialogue among each other.

My name is O mar Ansari as Marilyn introduced.  Doing business in Afghanistan running a technology company called Tech Nation.  And also been a member of the Internet Society of Afghanistan, which is a civil organization and helps with the more with the capacity building as well as contributing to policy issues related to the Internet governance network of ICT, Internet users.  Not a technology association alone:  Looking into ways to too diverse stakeholders and to have better policy environment.  Before I begin with the issues I have I would like to tell you a story about how I started.  I was in a political vein after I resigned from my job with the ministry of communications in IT Microsoft and others on software localization.  I volunteered for this political (audio cut out) I started a business and it was a time when I was in debt and going through a lot of, you know, issues.  It took me like two years to really establish the business.  It was really hard at the beginning but we could make it.  Startups start that way.  I'm happy to say that Tech Nation has about 100 team members that include project staff, includes our full‑time team members.  And also we're working on number of projects that have‑not only national impact but global impact.  And this is how the startups start.  We do not need heavy investment.  Goods ideas, passionate team, excellent execution and also environment, regulatory and policy environment that can help us grow and develop and this is the reason we are interested in Internet Society of Afghanistan in a business community in Afghanistan to work closely with government counterpart to contribute to the development of the not only Internet in Afghanistan but also the overall economic growth in our country.  There are certain issues I'd like to ‑‑ we can discuss face‑to‑face with the team and the panel as well as those who are in the audiences while security and caption being the two key challenges, there are certain other issues which require immediate attention of not only the government but policy all those institutions and individuals who are interested in policy and regulatory issues.  One of the biggest challenges in Afghanistan is the price of Internet and I have been and other colleagues have been raising this issue in number of other sessions, not only here but also in Afghanistan.  I'll give you some figures.  One for the Internet costs $150 average.  If you get a ‑‑ it's going to cost you $1,500 a month.  If you bring fiber to home, the installation would cost you $3,230,000 and plus you will be paying a monthly maintenance fee of 550‑dollar.  If you are getting Internet for fiber then you will be paying roughly $2,050.  If you get 100 that will cost you 15,000 to $16,000.  It had 15 and here it's being the same cost in Afghanistan telecommunications.  Afghanistan telecommunications being and the people being ‑‑ not affordable at all for Afghan citizens to connect.  Immediate attention after initial communications (audio fading in and out) in China and digital economy in general.  Priority ‑‑ that's one of the reasons Afghan businesses can grow.  This is something that is very relevant to the Afghanistan bank as well as our ministry of communications as well as, capacity building, these are key challenges in Afghanistan that also causes, you know, connectivity issues ‑‑ local content and technologies as also ‑‑ as we discussed these are other issues in a needs immediate attention because Afghans do not see the benefit of spending money on the Internet because it's expensive and they don't see the benefits ‑‑ only person will be utilizing is you.

Copyright industry has been companies hiring developers but they go to other companies and they take ‑‑ companies do not know where to go and how to act in copyrights and patents.  Procurement has been an issue and renewed transparency in that.  Jurisdictions, especially after the new government is formed we are very hopeful and as somebody who has campaigned for the current president of Afghanistan, the ‑‑

>> Have groups that keep going and, you know, now there is a use at ISOC there are many observatories, many smaller groups, bigger groups generations of groups and those are resources.  It's not just our friends.  Those are resources also the institutions that are going to pay for to you travel to somewhere must be willing to pay you to invest in something ‑‑ if where he don't keep that mentality, if we don't keep mentality of how to move things forward and create new spaces ‑‑ a chance for the public‑private partnerships, dialogues, collaboration and digital economy and develop.  That's ‑‑ I think my time is up.  Thank you so much.

>> Marilyn:  Thank you, Omar.  Now I introduce Dr. Chris Haye and ask you to speak for five minutes.

>> Chris:  Would it be possible to make a few comments ‑‑ open platform, please?

>> Marilyn:  Are you making comments or asking questions then please state your name for the record.

>> My name is Said, AP Amazon fellow.  I come from Afghanistan.  Very ambitious plan.  202050 percent five to 7 percent in 2018, 17, 18, position in 17 years.  How do you ensure we get 50 percent in two years?  Also talked about that has been in the plan for the past I think at least five years has been no discussions at all in Afghanistan.  Not sure what plan you have when you come to these forums here.  I wish we could have more of these forums in Afghanistan for the general public for the Afghan citizens.  I see Dr. Azizi in Brazil and in ‑‑ talking about the same plan ‑‑ restrictions very interesting to me when you are shutting down what's happening.  That was coming from the government.  So I don't know what kind of restrictions are you planning on removing when putting restrictions on the citizens.  So discussion would be towards Mr. Rahoua, in the past we have situation where data center director had to have ‑‑ shut down the entire data center where most of the Afghan websites are hosted, most of the Afghan public services are hosted and then turning back on the ‑‑ how are you going to make sure that doesn't happen anymore?  Thank you.

>> UnIdentified Speaker:  Thank you very much for coming to the session and thank you for the interesting comments you made.  Today we have got around 7 million people using the 3G and 2G data services in Afghanistan.  We are not that far away.  Yeah, in the last 50 years we have achieved a lot and in next three years we have opportunity to realize this group and 50 percent population being online.  On the ISPs, let me tell you that the ministry just two weeks back signed a contract at last.  We all have been waiting for that.  By the way, not enough.  It's again statement and not enough.  We do need our partners ‑‑ from private sector to also come forward and none of the ISPs.  Unfortunately Mexico and now you're seeing me here at IGF.  However, we do have a multi consultation meeting with the mobile ‑‑ we have a quarterly presentation with the Internet service providers and then on and off available always also media we are probably I have to make myself more available to Civil Society ‑‑ who attend these more often than I do and I have to take the advantage of everything and you mentioned about meeting of restrictions.  There are a couple of things that matters from the emergency security perspective and I will not comment this from that.  However, is very clear that we want to make it quickly for all the stakeholders in particular you have seen in last two and a half years.  I have not favored the estate on the Telecom operator.  I have given everybody a same chance for the first time the Telecom which is state owned company has paid universal access fund.  They have been operating for the last eight years.  20,151st time ‑‑ open‑ended taxes and just to tell you I put this proposal to the higher of the Telecom license which is approved and we would be able to also charge license fee.  I hope I'm very clear.  Thank you very much.

>> Just quick feedback on what you said being available to the citizens.  I think I would disagree on that because everything that happens, all the discussions that happen with the private sector or other gentleman they are behind closed doors.  Openness and closed that does not mean you talk to private sectors behind closed doors and label that as ‑‑ I don't believe you or the entire department are reachable.  I would still like to see you demonstrate under you that they report to you that they be available than the person that is here right now.  Thank you.

>> Marilyn:  Thank you, may, Chris, please turn to you and we will invite comments and then we will take final questions.

>> Chris:  Good afternoon.  Thank you Marilyn and the IGF to participate in this important session today.  Again, I'm Christopher Hay, on infrastructure deployment and financing in the tech and energy sectors.  I have been involved in Afghanistan since 2002 in various U.S. Government and private sector capacities.

With regards to the BIOS group, wireless communications, Afghan wireless communications was the first mobile network operator in Afghanistan launched in 2002.  Fifteen years later they have 5 million subscribers, approximately 25 percent marketshare and have deployed 3G, 3.75G and are the first and recently this year we're the first to deploy for LTG capabilities in May of 200117.  Since 2000 ‑‑ up until 2017AWCC has invested $400 million in capital investment into their network.  Thank you, Doctor for your presentation on the open forum and promoting Internet use in Afghanistan by these regulatory reforms.  We're very supportive of the efforts that you're putting in place and really look to the IGF and other countries to provide guidance to Afghanistan telecommunications to make sure we're putting the right regulatory reforms and policies in place because it's very important to get this right.  It's important to get this right for the carriers in terms of profitability and future investment and to ensure the correct cooperation with the carriers here to get the cost priced correctly for the Afghan citizens so this ‑‑ these services can actually reach the Afghan population at the right cost and quality in the timeline that you laid out.  One thing we need to think about though is there's many examples in the world where the wrong regulations have been put in place.  And we want to be in the situation with ATRA and Dr. Azizi to be coming back here and talking about the right regulations put in place and Afghanistan is a leader because we have been able to listen to these forums and actually ensure what's being deployed is of benefit to the carriers and Afghan population.

With that I'll keep my comments brief and thank you very much to IGF and Dr. Azizi.

[ APPLAUSE ]

>> Marilyn:  Reza, I'm turning to you and I think we can spend at least five minutes and then we will take questions.

>> Reza:  Thank you Maryann and IGF and thank you for inviting us to this meeting.  Give brief information about infrastructure which we have document.  Connectivity from government which is all we have in place and through different projects, government working to enhance existing connectivity, improve the connectivity and bring the fiber for the provinces.  Once we have connectivity within the country, again, based on the plan we are moving E services which is ‑‑ so working forward to establish Afghan support of the ‑‑ for all the public to that portal but you can access most of the public services to online.  Almost a few of this public services are expected and teams are working on those services and maybe within next few years we will have more possible Visa and work permit online for public and working closely with traffic to bring traffic and also there is services which is selected for the government are on the process.  Maybe by 2020 we will have almost 12 foreign services.  Thank you.

>> Marilyn:  Thank you.  That's very exciting.  And I'm also just it thinking myself having been in Kabul recently and planning to return for your second IGF next year and noticing the traffic, I was just thinking myself how you really are going to be implementing some plan changes that are all Afghan citizens are going to really benefit from.  This is an exciting plan.  Of course we all know that it is very challenging to turn a strategy and plan into reality and I think that's one of the things that I'm going to just make a comment about and then ask all of you to think about questions.

Afghanistan as Dr. Azizi has referenced some of the challenges that Afghanistan has but I think but I think one of the challenges that perhaps we haven't thought about quite enough ‑‑ that was referenced is this issue digital literacy for all of the citizens as we are moving into a digitized world we can throw money and technology at the energy challenge.  We can throw money and technology and investment at the communications challenge, but it's really hard to think that money and technology are going to help us build the kind of digitally capable citizens and workers that that we need for the future and help us create jobs for our youth.  Maybe I might just throw out also a question myself as you're focusing on the infrastructure there are other agencies that you're working with, et cetera, as you're focusing on the infrastructure and connectivity the 2000 and on the applications, are there things that are also underway within Afghanistan such as bringing more digital literacy into the school, capability training, are things of that nature underway as well and then let me open it up for questions.

>> UnIdentified Speaker:  Thank you.  To the project we have three companies and the first components, connectivity, which will connect universities, of course, to the Internet.  Almost all the university will be connected to Internet.  Again, digital conference we will have a different program for the universities and ‑‑ to use solutions how to use their solutions which is far from the cities or from (speaking softly).

>> Marilyn:  That's very exciting.  I would offer one minute to Chris and also to you, Omar, if you wanted to make comments about the question I asked about digital literacy and capability for the future and then let me open it up.  You want to go first Omar and then Chris.

>> Omar:  Thanks again.  We have a program which is very knew with education.  It's called ‑‑ and the purpose is to build ‑‑ provide digital literacy trainings to ‑‑ about 50,000 women across Afghanistan.  Because based on our research one of the major challenges the Afghans have related to access is that people aren't digitally literate, especially women.  That's why they do not own, you know, mobile devices or computer devices and they cannot teach their kids, you know, on how they can utilize the technologies better.  Our ‑‑ contributes to the unemployment as well because the market demand something and university teaching something else.  There is a gap between our education and the market, skills required for the market to have digital literacy program and we are hoping that NCIT and ATWA could also join the campaign will be teaching both technical skills so they can understand how to process information, how to manage information which will improve the employability for women and their employment.

>> Marilyn:  We are really already overtime.  Chris, I don't know if you wanted to make a comment.

>>

 

>> Chris:  Yeah, several things that the buy I don't say group has in terms of managing and closing the literacy gap.  Most significant is their investment in American university in Afghanistan, C has made a very significant in the new building going to be opening up this year.  That's in addition to public awareness programs they have through ATN, their television station in Afghanistan and other programs they have with the BIOS foundation schools.

>> Marilyn:  Thanks.  Okay.  We probably only take two questions because then we do need to leave.  Do I have two volunteers?

Rasa.

>> UnIdentified Speaker:  Dr. Azizi, thanks for the slide briefing you have shared.

>> Marilyn:  And I'm sorry but do please say your name.

>> I'm Muhammed Siaya, security for the government of Afghanistan.  The question issue one concern that I experience in the private sectors.  I speak on so many ‑‑ how do you ensure privacy of the city.  Even with this connectivity of the companies how would you show that.  Plus Dr. Azizi sent you ‑‑ also background in technology.  You have this region ‑‑ you have the ‑‑ you have proposal solution, do you have any solution for that?  Because pointing from issues could be some ‑‑ or do you have a plan for that?  How we can work together the government and private to resolve this issue permanent?  You don't have this in our (?) do you have a solution for that?  Thanks.

>> Marilyn:  I'm going to be really tough and say one minute answers and I think you kind of cheated and got two questions for one.  So ‑‑ yes, let's hear your question, Rafa and then we'll wrap up.

>> Rafa from Internet Society Afghanistan.  I have a question and it's a compound question.  Since I cannot go for two or three questions.  Don't worry, it's not going to be subjective.  Its going to be objectively driven.  50 percent coverage for the population in terms of Internet users.  Do you have a road map for that?  If yes can we get a copy of that?  Second one is the with the Open Access Policy as you mentioned in your slides, it brings growth investment and opportunity and takes the monopoly from other companies.  Based on the stats you provided out of five companies only one company was a local company four of them were international companies.  Does this mean that the cost of the license fee is something which is not affordable by the local market?  And with the Internet exchange, as long as you don't have one single gateway, how you going to implement the Internet exchange in currently we have more than 60 gateways.  Thank you very much.

>> Marilyn:  We'll ask Dr. Azizi to respond quickly and then we may end up following ‑‑ end up having to leave and then we could follow up by e‑mail or by ‑‑ because another group is coming in.  I think I'm actually going to ‑‑

>> UnIdentified Speaker he can go through the first question ‑‑

>> Marilyn:  Do prepare to leave in two minutes.  Thank you.

>> 30 seconds is the response proper regulation, market.

>> 50 percent population could be online.  Do have comprehensive and that's why we have.  On ISP, one gateway or multiple gateways.  We have to make sure that we have the local traffic local.  Thank you.

>> UnIdentified Speaker:  You are paying for the Internet you cannot localize that yourself.

>> UnIdentified Speaker:  (?)

>> Marilyn:  We'll figure out a way to have an opportunity to provide answers from the folks with the questions were addressed to.  I want to thank everyone for joining us and for the questions and the participation and you all know how to find me now that you know who I am and hopefully we will see you all around.  Thank you again for coming and I want to thank the Afghan government for doing their first open forum at their only second IGF.  Pretty impressive.  (Concluded)

 

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