An African TV White Space Strategy

TV  White Space (TVWS) technology and regulation has its roots in the United States in the early 2000’s where there was an emerging sense of the growing impact of wireless technologies designed for unlicensed (ISM band) use as well as a recognition that manufacturing costs were coming down substantially.  Low-power use of unused guard bands in the VHF and UHF television frequencies seemed to ho

Dynamic Spectrum in Africa in 2018

Advocating for change in spectrum regulation is not a game for sprinters.  As someone who has championed dynamic spectrum regulation for a longer than I would ever have imagined, I am still getting used to the idea that what looks like the finish line, may just be the start of a another lap.

How To Let GSM Serve The People That Other Networks Can’t Reach

Mobile telephony has transformed access to communication in emerging markets.  In 1994, there were more telephone lines in New York City than in the whole of Africa.  These days, about two thirds of the population in sub-Saharan Africa is covered by a mobile phone signal.  That’s an amazing and profound change yet there are still millions of people who don’t have access to mobile networks.

Zero-Rating, Net Neutrality, and the Regulatory Toolbox

The tools available to communication regulators to ensure a fair, competitive market fall into two broad categories.  The first category is the ability to incentivise more competition and better behaviour in general.  This can happen through lowering the barriers to market entry, through opening up new means of service delivery, etc.

A Look at Spectrum in Four African Countries

This entry is part 6 of 6 in the series Africa and Spectrum 2.0

Does effective spectrum management make a real difference when it comes to more pervasive and affordable access to communication?

Spectrum and the Paradox of the ITU

This entry is part 5 of 6 in the series Africa and Spectrum 2.0

The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) is a paradox.  It is simultaneously an enabler and an obstacle to progress when it comes to radio spectrum.

Why Can’t Anyone Agree on Spectrum?

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the series Africa and Spectrum 2.0

Electromagnetic spectrum is the crude oil of last-mile connectivity, especially in Africa where more traditional kinds of last-mile communication infrastructure are not especially well-d

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Central Bank of Nigeria Approves New Capital Base Requirements for Microfinance Banks (MFBs), MFBs Await Capital Verification Results

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Nigeria’s central banking authority, has approved the new capital base requirements for microfinance banks (MFBs) as per the expectations reported in the MicroCapital story dated June 28.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Reduces Provision Requirements for Microfinance Loans

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has withdrawn general provision requirements for loans extended by microfinance banks (MFB) that are secured against collateral.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Dr Muhammad Yunus Suggests Microfinance “Misinterpreted” as Charity in the Arab World due to Outdated Regulation

Dr Muhammad Yunus, the founder of Bangladeshi microfinance institution (MFI) Grameen Bank, recently argued that the Arab world has “misinterpreted the system’s true principles” by operating it as a “charity affair” [1].

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: In Center for Financial Inclusion (CFI) Report, “Opportunities and Obstacles to Financial Inclusion,” Microfinance Stakeholders Cite Financial Education as Top Need

The Center for Financial Inclusion (CFI), an affiliate of US-based nonprofit ACCION International, recently released a report titled “Opportunities and Obstacles to Financial Inclusion”, that identifies client financial education as the top opportunity in the microfinance sphere [1].

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Consortium on Financial Systems and Poverty (CFSP) Researchers Posit Weak Financial Sectors in Developing Countries Encourage Microenterprises at Expense of Economic Growth

In a recent paper, “Finance and Development: A Tale of Two Sectors,” published in the academic journal American Economic Review, researchers affiliated with the US-based nonprofit Consortium on Financial Systems and Poverty (CFSP), conclude that poor access to financing opportunities in developing countries makes it harder for entrepreneurs to start large-scale businesses like manufacturing [1]

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Bank of Ghana Issues New Licensing Regime to Regulate Microfinance Industry

In an attempt to improve regulation of microfinance institutions (MFIs) in the country, the Bank of Ghana (BoG), the central bank of Ghana, recently issued new operating rules and guidelines under the Non-bank Financial Institutions Act 2008. Among those being regulated are ‘susu’ companies, which are named after a traditional, informal means to save and borrow.

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