New research by the GSMA has found that increased broadband connections in Asia Pacific will generate $1.2 trillion of GDP growth and create up to 35 million new jobs by 2020, but only if governments act immediately to fully release existing harmonised mobile spectrum bands.
Governments must also allocate more spectrum for mobile to meet rising consumer demand and support the development of new mobile services in the longer term, it adds.
The study estimates that there will be 3 billion mobile broadband connections (3G and 4G) in Asia Pacific by 2020.
The report’s findings were presented at Huawei’s Global Mobile Broadband Forum, 12 months ahead of the World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-15) treaty negotiations, which will be pivotal to determining the future of the mobile internet.
“The negotiations at WRC-15 in Geneva provide a unique opportunity for leaders in the Asia Pacific region to support the next generation of mobile networks and services,” said Tom Phillips, chief regulatory officer, GSMA.
“We urge governments to make a strong call for significantly more spectrum for mobile, to promote the future growth of their countries’ digital economies and enhance the lives of their citizens through widespread access to digital services and, hence, greater social inclusion,” he added.
The findings of the report are supported by the GSMA’s spectrum estimation model, which predicts a global shortfall of mobile spectrum of between 600MHz to 800MHz.
The report also says that a 10 percentage point rise in broadband connections leads to between 0.26 and 0.92 per cent increase in GDP and that for every extra 1,000 broadband connections, 33 new jobs are created.