Approximately $18.9 million has been set aside in the 2013/14 Estimates of Expenditure to enhance the Information and Communications Technology (ICT), regulatory environment of the country.
The project, which gets underway this month, will be implemented by the Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, with funding support from the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB). It is scheduled to end in October 2014.
Among its key objectives are: the establishment of a modern island-wide telecommunications network with universal service for all Jamaicans and the wide deployment of broadband service; and creating an understanding of sector dynamics, which will enable the Government to facilitate future broadband deployment and adoption, while tailoring its market interventions to complement private sector investments.
During the fiscal year, a review of the existing regulatory framework for the ICT sector will be undertaken, with specific recommendations for the drafting of appropriate legislation for the establishment of a converged stand-alone ICT regulator.
The governance model of the existing regulator will also be evaluated and proposal made for an organisational structure for the establishment and implementation of a new entity.
An assessment will carried out of the Geographic Information System (GIS) capabilities already available within the Government, to enable the preparation and planning for the development and hosting of an interactive broadband coverage map.