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Digital CASA: New Project In Central Asia

Tuesday, June 20, 2017 - 22:04

Tajikistan has seen the presentation of the Digital CASA project. It's based on the idea of connecting South and Central Asia with a single fiber-optic line. A number of international financial institutions have already announced their desire to participate in financing the program, including the World Bank. In fact, Digital CASA can be called an analog of the energy project called CASA-1000, since it is of similar significance for the region.

 

The idea of connecting the two regions of Asia – Central and Southern – with an optic-fiber line was the basis of the project. The potential participants of the Digital CASA project are Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan and Pakistan. The main result of the project will be ensuring access to cheap broadband Internet for residents of the south of Central Asia. This will be achieved through the use of alternative networks.

 

Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan are currently providing active support to the project. Tajikistan has not yet decided on its participation in Digital CASA. The final concept of the project will be approved in autumn 2017.

 

If Tajikistan drags out answering to the proposal to participate in the project, the republic will miss serious benefits and dividends, including financial ones. In the opinion of the parties interested in Dushanbe's accession to the project (including representatives of the World Bank), the Internet connection to the broadband channel through South Asia will open wide economic opportunities for the countries of Central Asia. According to their assessments, this project will contribute to the development of the regional digital economy.

 

According to the World Bank, only 17 percent of the country's population has constant access to the Internet in Tajikistan, and less than a third in Kyrgyzstan. The cost of the basic tariff in these two states is one of the highest in the world.



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