March 19, 2008
600 participants from 90 countries attended the Symposium held in Pattaya, Thailand from 11 to 13 March 2008
The GSR is an annual event bringing together heads of national regulatory authorities worldwide. Chaired by General Choochart Promphrasid, Chairman of the National Telecommunication Commission (NTC) in Pattaya, Thailand, the 8th annual Global Symposium for Regulators (GSR-08) was organized by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in collaboration with the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology (MICT) and NTC of Thailand. This year’s conference focused on Innovative infrastructure sharing and open access strategies to promote affordable access for all. Telecom Regulators presented their vision and fostered open discussions to explore new regulatory measures to encourage investment and growth in information and communication technologies (ICT). The symposium was marked by the presence and dynamic participation of Dr Hamadoun Touré, Secretary-General of ITU and Mr Sami Al Basheer Al-Murshid, Director of ITU’s Telecommunication Development Bureau.
Infrastructure sharing has numerous benefits for Service Providers and consumers. Network deployment costs can be significantly lowered and a greater number of service providers can operate and be profitable. By stimulating competition, Infrastructure Sharing results in more added value services and lower prices for end users.
Discussions during the symposium evolved around:
- Efficient use of resources
- Spectrum sharing
- Neutral, fair and non-discriminating interconnection
- Transparency in information sharing
- Sharing with other infrastructure industries, such as electricity, gas, water, sewage, railways to distribute the cost of civil works
Regulators recognized the need for regional and international harmonization to ensure widespread use of best practice regulatory policies on sharing, especially in areas dealing with cross-border effects.
This conference represented an remarkable opportunity for the TRA to exchange knowledge and best practices with other regulators and to build on its exiting international relations network though active discussions with –among others- representatives from FCC (US), ARCEP (France), IDA (Singapore), PTS (Sweeden), OFCOM Switzerland and OFCOM UK.
Dr. Kamal Shehadi, Chairman and CEO of the TRA Lebanon submitted key issues summarizing the work and vision of the TRA Lebanon on Infrastructure Sharing and opened the door for major exchange of ideas and expertise with other panelists and attendees. Dr. Shehadi addressed five main topics summarizing the challenges faced by key stakeholders in Lebanon for the implementation of fiber networks and expanding on the role of Telecom Regulators to set market standards. He stated “The TRA will establish procedures and processes to facilitate infrastructure sharing and intends to encourage service providers to find ways to share infrastructure. The Authority will rely as much as possible on market incentives for such arrangements and will take into account the relationship between infrastructure sharing and other areas such as licensing conditions, competition, policy and market power, relations with other owners of infrastructure and universal access”
To view the TRA official press release click here
To learn more about the GSR, please regularly visit the ITU website