Communications Minister Mrs Ursula Owusu Ekuful says her outfit is pursuing a strong digital agenda aimed at transforming the economy.
“It is digi-time in Ghana” she said to delegates attending the 2018 plenipotentiary conference of the International telecommunication union in Dubai.
“Our President is a firm advocate for the utilization of technology for the realization of all the Sustainable Development Goals and we are actively working towards that,” she added.
According to her, the country is committed to the common vision of “an information society, empowered by the interconnected world, where telecommunication/ICTs enable and accelerate social, economic and environmentally sustainable growth and development for everyone”.
Briefing the delegates about the state of telecommunication in Ghana, the sector minister said “with widespread broadband infrastructure in the country and international bandwidth provided by five submarine optic fibre cables, Ghana with a population of over 29 million people has recorded mobile voice penetration of 137.38% and data penetration of 75.54%. Ghana’s telecommunication sector has over 20 Internet Service Providers with an average download speed of 4.78 Mbps and is still growing stronger due to the enabling environment created for the private sector to thrive.”
She is convinced these strides will improve the efficiency of service delivery in the country with particular attention to “rural and underserved communities, women and gender parity and opportunities for the youth through the nurturing of new businesses, creation of job opportunities, facilitation of ICT-based entrepreneurship and securing our cyberspace for the realization of the SDGs.”
The minister also chronicled some achievements her government has chalked in the last two years of coming into power.
“This year alone, we have constructed 400 rural telephony sites with 80 repeater stations and connected almost a million people.
We have implemented a paperless port that has reduced the time spent in transacting business at the port from 14 days to 6 hours. We are in the process of migrating from analogue to digital broadcasting and benefitting from the digital dividend through the sale of one bloc in the 800 MHz band being used for 4G services.
“Through the assistance of the ITU, we have operationalized the conformance and interoperability laboratories for type approval in Ghana and have extended an invitation to the ITU to utilize these 4 laboratories as centers of excellence in training and capacity building for the sub-region.
“Ghana is making every effort to provide a safe environment for digital participation through the establishment of Computer Incident Response Teams both at the national and sectoral levels, including CERTs for the financial and telecommunications sectors and established a National Cyber Security Centre,” she said.