Launch of capacity building programme for ICT sector in Kosovo

By Axel  Reiserer

Launch of capacity building programme for ICT sector in Kosovo

EBRD and ARKEP to strengthen development of information and communications technology

The authorities of Kosovo and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) are joining forces to strengthen the information and communications technology (ICT) sector, a vibrant and fast-growing area which is crucial for successful future economic development.

As a first step in this cooperation, the Regulatory Authority of Electronic and Postal Communications (ARKEP) and the EBRD have launched an ICT capacity building programme in Kosovo.

The programme will take place in September, October and November 2017. It will provide training to support the regulatory development of this dynamic sector, which includes telecommunications, internet and broadband networks and services. The programme is funded by the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund.

Kreshnik Gashi, Chairman of ARKEP, said: “The programme has been planned by ARKEP in cooperation with the EBRD and is based on the recognition that the ICT sector in Kosovo increasingly depends on an advanced knowledge base. Regulation is not the adversary of innovation, but an essential support as it provides the stable framework needed for the sector to flourish and grow.”

Paul Moffatt, EBRD Senior Counsel, Legal Transition, added: “Given the complexity of the ICT sector today, training for current and forward-looking practices and procedures is becoming increasingly important for effective regulation. In response to this requirement, the EBRD and ARKEP have developed a comprehensive programme which will provide detailed training covering all areas of law, policy, regulation, technical, financial and economic practices and procedures relevant to the sector.”

European experts invited by the EBRD will lead training sessions at ARKEP’s headquarters in Pristina. They will also be advising their Kosovan counterparts on the specific challenges facing the sector. Regulation of electronic communications markets is a complex issue involving law, policy, technical, financial, economic and competition practices.

The launch event in Pristina was attended by ARKEP and EBRD officials who were joined by representatives of Kosovo’s Ministry of Economic Development, the country’s independent media commission, the competition authority and guests from the networks and services providers.