Publication:
Better Internet for All Filipinos: Reforms Promoting Competition and Increasing Investment for Broadband Infrastructure - A Policy Note

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Date
2024-01-22
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2024-01-22
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Abstract
Equitable access to broadband services is imperative to narrow the digital divide and for more people to benefit from digitalization. Compared to other ASEAN countries, the Philippines’ internet connectivity lags in affordability, speed, and access, creating an uneven landscape for digital participation. Limited internet access curbs digital potential for citizens and businesses, with peri-urban connectivity being critical to future growth. The country’s poor broadband infrastructure is rooted in outdated policy frameworks that stifle investment in rural areas and foster a market with weak competition, both of which hinder broadband expansion. Binding constraints underlying the Philippines’ poor broadband infrastructure are inter-related, requiring a comprehensive package of reforms to yield desired entry, investment, and sector performance outcomes. The open access in data transmission (OADT) bill is a promising, viable start, among several proposals in Congress. Policymakers can build on immediate reforms through the open access bill as an entry point to broader and medium- to longer-term digital connectivity agenda. The cost of inaction - loss of growth opportunity, people remaining unequipped for future jobs, and widening of the digital divide - is too high for the Philippines.
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World Bank. 2024. Better Internet for All Filipinos: Reforms Promoting Competition and Increasing Investment for Broadband Infrastructure - A Policy Note. © Washington, DC: World Bank. http://hdl.handle.net/10986/40924 License: CC BY-NC 3.0 IGO.
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