Bolivian government targets improved rural access

13 Oct 2006

According to BNamericas quoting reports by the local press, telecommunications undersecretary Roy Méndez has revealed that the Bolivian government will install 2,000 public internet centres within the next five years. The centres will provide users with access to telephony, data and television services. Regulatory body Sittel backs the plan that will see at least 100 such facilities introduced by the end of this year, and 1,500 in rural areas by the end of 2007. BNamericas goes on to say that the program is part of a national digital inclusion plan aimed at improving access outside of towns and cities. Only seven out of every one thousand rural inhabitants have internet access, while nearly 26,000 communities with over 350 inhabitants have no telephony services at all. Public telephony services reach 0.6% of Bolivia’s rural population compared with 60% of urban dwellers.