5G forum to take SA forward

Thursday, May 31, 2018

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) has established the 5G Forum with Working Groups which is aimed at addressing a number of aspects in relation to 5G, says Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane.

These aspects include spectrum to enable the uptake of 5G Systems, policy and regulation, standards, research and development, as well as use cases.

“It is our sincere belief that these initiatives are in the best interests of South Africa’s digital future and in accordance with South Africa-Connect to increase broadband access and usage; the Electronic Communications Act to encourage research on topics designed to achieve the objects of the Act as well as with the mandate to ensure efficient use of spectrum,” the Minister said.

She was addressing the fifth 5G Huddle conference in Durban on Wednesday.

“One of the key strategies geared at achieving the digital Agenda in South Africa is to ensure that the policies and regulatory regimes for the International Mobile Telecommunications 2020 (IMT 2020) also known as 5G are flexible, and that they support innovative technologies as well as serve the needs of end-users,” the Minister said.

She said 5G is the future of emerging networks and infrastructure that is to support the digitisation of the economy and societal activities worldwide. 

“To this end, the ICASA has prioritised the diffusion of technologies as one of its strategic objectives in establishing innovative approaches to the use of emerging technologies in order to advance efficient use of the Spectrum resource.

She said the affordability of technology for the people of South Africa and Africa remains a concern.

“Otherwise, if the issue of cost, in whichever way we look at, is not grappled with and resolved, integration into the next generation of technology would remain a serious impediment towards improving of the digital divide,” the Minister said. – SAnews.gov.za