Key stakeholders within the Ivory Coast's telecommunications industry, including the regulator, operators and internet service providers (ISPs) have signed an operating charter for the country's national internet exchange point, CIVIX.
The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Côte D'Ivoire (ARTCI), along with telcos including MTN, Orange and Moov, as well as ISPs committed to the charter at a ceremony hosted in Abidjan.
A statement issued by ARTCI reads: "By signing the operating burden of the national Internet exchange point, the telecom regulator and the various companies that provide data to Ivorians have committed to participatory and inclusive management of this technological infrastructure that contributes to improving the quality of the internet, internet speeds, and a reduction in the additional costs of carrying data that affects the billing of consumers."
CIVIX was built with two physical points of presence through a secure broadband network: one hosted at Orange Côte d'Ivoire Telecom and the other at MTN Côte d'Ivoire, with a centre supervisory authority hosted within ARTCI.
While the IXP has been operational since 2013, under the leadership of the Ministry of the Digital Economy and the Post Office, active role-players have, until now, not committed to any joint agreement.
The charter was developed to ensure transparent management of the physical infrastructure through which data segment representatives exchange traffic via peering agreements.
Telecoms revenue drops by 2%
In a related development, ARTCI said revenues generated by the telecoms sector in Côte d'Ivoire dropped by 2% in Q2 of 2019 to US 373-million.
Unless the situation improves, it could impact the contribution telecommunications makes towards the national GDP, which stood at 9% at the end of 2018 when the sector generated US$920-million.
Telecoms investments made in Q2 of 2019 amounted to FCFAF 22,116,475,588 (about US$37.3-million), a 33.25% reduction compared to the same period in 2018.
Fixed telephony sector achieved a turnover of 20.3-billion FCFA (US$34.4-million) for 302,043 subscribers, mobile telephony raised 191.2-billion FCFA (US$324.7-million) for 35,924,714 subscribers while fixed internet brought in 8.7-billion FCFA (US$15.2-million), for 195,969 subscribers.
Revenue from mobile internet topped 35-billion FCFA (US$59.4-million) for 15,793,624 subscribers.