Govt to Spend Ksh106 Billion to Fast Track Digital Economy Blueprint


The government seeks to provide uninterrupted internet access across the country in line with its vision to provide a seamless and sustainable digital society by 2027.

This is according to the Communications Authority’s (CA) Fifth Strategic Plan 2023-2027 which highlights the strategic objectives for spearheading digital access for the public. 

The plan will assist President William Ruto’s push to transform the country into a thriving digital economy through the integration of tech-based initiatives.

In his manifesto, the Head of State championed the transformation of the country into an ICT innovation hub to unlock its digital economy potential such as the creation of 1 million digital jobs. 

Some of the measures in place by Ruto’s administration include the Digital Economy blueprint, the Konza Technopolis project, the Data Protection Act, Kenya Start-up Act as the key areas of focus that anchor the robust framework.

Entrance to the Communication Authority of Kenya (CA) offices along Waiyaki Way.

Photo

CA

To achieve this ambitious goal of transforming Kenya into an ICT hub of sorts, there is a need for high-speed internet connectivity that is accessible by the majority of Kenyans.

As a result, the Communications Authority’s strategic plan seeks to enhance fiber-optic technology, which offers high-speed internet connectivity as compared with other broadband options.

In the plan, CA seeks Ksh106 billion total towards facilitating the digital economy.

For the next five years, the amount will be divided into seven strategic areas; ICT infrastructure and services Ksh33.8 billion), consumer protection (Ksh1 billion), consumer empowerment (Ksh5 billion), competitive markets (Ksh445 million), emerging technologies (Ksh1.5 billion), institutional excellence (Ksh53 billion) and environmental sustainability (Ksh343 million).

“The Authority operates on a self-financing model, where, in the past, its operations were fully funded through the revenue it generates,” CA stated.

“This approach allows the Authority to allocate its resources strategically and prioritize key initiatives while at the same time emphasizing cost management and efficient utilization of resources to ensure revenue sustainability and the long-term viability of its mandate.”

Leading telco providers have laid thousands of fibre-optic cables to provide Kenyans instant internet access. This has enabled the companies to provide 4G and 5G mobile networks and hence provide faster streaming services.

According to CA, 449,794 Kenyans had subscribed to 5G as of June 2023, a number that is expected to hike in the coming years.

“Internet subscriptions grew from 41.1 million in June 2018 to 49.36 million in June 2023 while broadband subscriptions grew from 20.5 million in June 2018 to 33.32 million in June 2023.”

Some of the resource mobilisation strategies CA seeks to employ include; diversifying revenue streams, enhancing Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs), grants, sponsorships and donations among others.

President William Ruto meeting KTDA tea factory chairmen and directors at State House, Nairobi, on May 14, 2024.

PCS



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