Vanuatu poised to unveil new national ICT policy

16 Apr 2013

The Oceania nation of Vanuatu has moved a step closer to the implementation of a comprehensive national policy for its information, communication and technology (ICT) sector, following an inaugural meeting of the National ICT Development Committee (NIDC) – the body tasked with carrying it out. Online paper Islands Business writes that the NIDC convened in January to discuss the importance of developing Vanuatu’s ICT sector.

The nation’s ICT Programme Manager Jackson Miake told the paper that in the wake of that meeting, all parties involved have agreed to work together to compile all the information needed to decide on the next course of action. ‘The outcome of the meeting will see a call for public input and by [end] April we should have a draft policy for discussion with all the data we have,’ Miake said. The policy, he said, will address a broad range of issues including ICT, telecoms and broadband development in the country, as well as new and emerging ICT issues such as cyber-security.

This is not the first time that Vanuatu has set in motion measures to address its underperforming ICT sector. In March this year the government, acting through the independent watchdog, the Telecommunication & Radiocommunication Regulator (TRR), began a public consultation on the fate of its country code Top Level Domain name (ccTLD) as it looks to take control of the resource. As reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, the .vu code is currently under the control of incumbent operator Telecom Vanuatu Ltd (TVL), but a public consultation initiated in October 2012 proposed a shift in responsibility. In its consultation paper, the TRR reportedly outlined a number of proposals on the future arrangements of the management of .vu, one of which involves the watchdog developing a formal regulation to assume the management rights from TVL.