Is Kenya’s Regulatory Framework Ready for Disruptions Brought About by 5g?
Maina, Margaret G
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Communications value chain has grown tremendously. Commercialized mobile networks have shifted from 1G to 2G, to 3G, to 4G and currently to 5G. 5G technology has been lauded as being disruptive and revolutionary by many commentators. The regulatory realm is expected to be also disrupted by 5G technology. Identifying key regulatory elements is the first step in examining the regulatory implications of 5G technology. Access regulation, consumer protection, competition enforcement and economic regulation, intellectual property, privacy and data protection, resource management, network security, taxation, and universal service and accessibility are some of the general elements of mobile communication ecosystem regulation. It is evident that 5G regulation must be broadened or linked to areas that are currently unregulated or only lightly regulated but will become part of the developing industrial ecosystem. This begs the question whether the current regulatory framework in Kenya will be disrupted by 5G technology thus occasioning reforms. This study analyses eight key strands of regulatory issues occasioned by 5G technology: Net neutrality; privacy and security; infrastructure sharing; deployment; spectrum allocation; mobile network standards; service diversification and bundling; and competition. These legal issues must be effectively addressed for efficient deployment of 5G networks. This study seeks to test the efficacy of the legal and institutional framework in Kenya in addressing these issues. This study also seeks to draw lessons from five jurisdictions. These are: South Africa, South Korea, Singapore, the US and the EU. These lessons will be vital in the establishment of 5G Roadmap in Kenya. South Africa was the 5G trailblazer in Africa. This study reviews regulatory practices from developed countries to draw lessons.
University of Nairobi
RightsAttribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States
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