Moving Faster to Reap BenefitsIn developed economies, which already boast high subscriber penetration rates, there is a need for cohesive regulation to encourage the growth of connected services such as Smart Cities and mHealth. For developing countries, there is a continuing need for regulation that encourages long-term investment in network roll-out and upgrades to improve access to basic services.
The GSMA is calling for changes that will further enable citizens throughout the region to reap the benefits of mobile. Consistent and fair long-term regulatory frameworks and taxation policies are needed to incentivise, not restrict, investment in mobile and spur regional economic growth and welfare improvement. For example, the Universal Service Obligation Framework (USOF) should be revisited to ensure that goals and levies are aligned to drive the availability of mobile services in areas not yet fully connected by mobile.
The timely availability of spectrum will also be critical in enabling the mobile industry to extend, upgrade and deliver new services. Regional Governments should be led by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) standards on the bands and amounts of spectrum made available to mobile operators as they seek to upgrade networks to 3G or 4G services. The drive towards band harmonisation, in line with the Asia Pacific Telecommunity (APT) band plan, is a critical part of this process, as up to 30 per cent of the benefits of the switch from analogue to digital TV broadcasts depend on harmonisation of the 700MHz band across the region.
Bouverot added: "Mobile is already a significant engine for growth and welfare improvement throughout the Asia Pacific region. Now there is a clear opportunity for mobile to further transform lives, create new businesses and drive additional economic growth. If regulators are focused on creating environments that encourage further investment, from both traditional and new mobile players, then this opportunity is well within the reach of all countries with the region, regardless of their level of economic development."To access the report please visit: www.gsma.com/mobileeconomyasia Notes to Editors 1The Mobile Economy Asia Pacific 2013 is the latest in a series of reports covering the region. The report, prepared by BCG for the GSMA, provides an updated and comprehensive analysis of the mobile communications industry across the Asia Pacific region, with the latest statistics and mobile market developments. It is an important reference point for mobile industry members, policy makers and other interested stakeholders. It covers the state of the industry, including the evolution of competition, innovation in new products, services and technologies and the industry's contribution to social and economic development across the region. 2The Asia Pacific region is defined in this report as Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tonga, Vanuatu and Vietnam. 3Amounts for mobile industry investment in infrastructure, GDP and contribution to public funding that were generated within the year 2012. 4In 2012, mobile network operators generated 1.4 per cent of GDP across Asia Pacific, amounting to US $298 billion. The full mobile ecosystem contributed US $351 billion to GDP across Asia Pacific. Mobile technology contributed an additional US $650 billion, or 3 per cent of GDP in 2012, to economic output through improved worker productivity enabled by mobile working. This is a combined total of just over US $1 trillion. 5 This includes value-added tax (VAT) on mobile services, import duties and other special taxes on handsets, corporate taxes applied to the mobile ecosystem revenues, employee taxes paid by people working in mobile ecosystem. When the revenue paid for spectrum licenses is included, the estimated contribution in 2012 exceeded US $225 billion, across the region. About the GSMAThe GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide. Spanning more than 220 countries, the GSMA unites nearly 800 of the world's mobile operators with more than 230 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset makers, software companies, equipment providers and Internet companies, as well as organisations in industry sectors such as financial services, healthcare, media, transport and utilities. The GSMA also produces industry-leading events such as the Mobile World Congress and Mobile Asia Expo. For more information, please visit the GSMA corporate website at www.gsma.com or Mobile World Live, the online portal for the mobile communications industry, at www.mobileworldlive.com Media Contacts: For the GSMACharlie Meredith-Hardy+44 7917 298428 CMeredith-Hardy@webershandwick.com Ava Lau ( Hong Kong)+852 2533 9928 email@example.com GSMA Press Office firstname.lastname@example.org SOURCE The GSMA