Universal Access and Service Interventions in South Africa: Best Practice, Poor Impact

Lewis, C. (2013). Universal Access and Service Interventions in South Africa: Best Practice, Poor Impact. African Journal of Information and Communication(13). LINK Centre, University of the Witwatersrand.

13 Pages Posted: 21 Sep 2015

See all articles by Charley Lewis

Charley Lewis

University of the Witwatersrand - Faculty of Humanities

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

Post-apartheid South Africa placed universal access and service at the forefront of its communications policy and regulatory interventions from 1996. It followed global best practice by imposing universal service obligations on licensees by establishing a universal service fund and a dedicated universal access regulatory body, as well as awarding targeted operator licences in areas of low teledensity. The effectiveness of these interventions is open to question, with fixed line teledensity falling and prepaid customers in the mobile sector now accounting for the overwhelming majority of telephony users nationwide. Starting with an overview of South Africa’s universal access and service imperative, this paper assesses the value and effectiveness of these universal access and service interventions. It shows how the burgeoning access to mobile has little to do with the impact of these interventions. Finally, the implications of this for universal access and service policy and regulation, and for its implementation, are considered.

Keywords: universal access, universal service, UAS, USF, USOs

Suggested Citation

Lewis, Charles, Universal Access and Service Interventions in South Africa: Best Practice, Poor Impact (2013). Lewis, C. (2013). Universal Access and Service Interventions in South Africa: Best Practice, Poor Impact. African Journal of Information and Communication(13). LINK Centre, University of the Witwatersrand. . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2663052

Charles Lewis (Contact Author)

University of the Witwatersrand - Faculty of Humanities ( email )

South Africa
+27-83-539-5242 (Phone)

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
31
Abstract Views
272
PlumX Metrics