Colombian President Iván Duque has brought into force Law 1978, of 25 July 2019, on the Modernisation of the Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) Sector. The main objectives of the new law, which was signed after lengthy debate, are to enhance legal certainty, simplify and modernise the sector’s institutional framework, encourage investment, and improve efficiency in paying the financial consideration and burdens of industry stakeholders (Article 1).
The GSMA welcomes this Law as highly significant not only for Colombia, but for the whole region, because it marks a paradigm shift towards implementing international best practice in spectrum policy, institutional frameworks, legislative simplification and digital inclusion.
In the next legislative phase, the spirit of the Law and its clearly defined objectives must equate to decisions that ensure greater efficiency in future auctions, provide certainty about licence renewal, and link use of the Single ICT Fund to tangible connectivity goals. In particular, we are very hopeful that the concept of “maximisation of social welfare” included in the Law will play a role in removing barriers to infrastructure deployment and help close the digital divide in Colombia.