The cost to implement Cabinet's approved ICT white paper policy recommendations and other ICT expenditure is expected to amount to R287.2m over the medium term, according to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.
The department of telecommunications will also facilitate and coordinate the implementation of the national e-strategy which plans to tap the National Development Plan (NDP) by prioritising sectoral electronic services such as e-health, e-agriculture and e-education.
To give effect to these activities, spending in the department's policy, research and capacity development programme is expected to amount to R287.2m.
This programme's purpose is to develop ICT policies and legislation that support the development of an ICT sector and, in turn, create favourable conditions for accelerated and shared economic growth.
Over the medium term, the telecoms department is expected to expand and modernise ICT infrastructure by implementing the South Africa Connect broadband policy, coordinating the migration to digital broadcasting, and implementing the legislative framework stemming from the 2016 National Integrated ICT Policy White Paper.
South Africa's Internet Service Providers' Association (ISPA) previously welcomed government's National ICT Policy White Paper calling it "broadly positive".
The policy, which has called on mobile networks to give up key spectrum to a single, countrywide wireless network, has however received mixed reaction from industry role players and mobile network operators.
Key findings of the report by research company Africa Analysis on the White Paper were that there was a significant expansion of government oversight and involvement, fundamental wholesale market impact, development of wholesale operator and spectrum licence implications.Source: http://allafrica.com/stories/201702230100.html