Chairman’s Statement During the Launch Ceremony of TRC’s Public Awareness & Education Campaign
Strength In Numbers: BVI Joins Regional Countries For Better Cable Programming
The CTU and the International Telecommunications Union will sit down for talks at the World Conference on International Telecommunications slated for Port of Spain, Trinidad.
“We intend to attend that meeting and to have a voice in that meeting with the help of the CTU in order that we can let the ITU know that the BVI is an English speaking country and the content that we are providing is not suitable for the BVI,” said Guy Malone, CEO of the BVI Telecommunications Regulatory Commission.
Earlier this year, Minister for Communications and Works, Hon. Mark Vanterpool met with the Commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the United States, Mr. Robert McDowell for an intervention in the challenges faced by residents in regards to the delivery of cable television service.
“We are looking for every opportunity that we can to get attention in terms of addressing this matter,” Minister Vanterpool told reporters on Friday, September 28.
He added, “I believe that we can work as the United States Virgin Islands did with the U.S. Congress because they had the same problem to get the attention of the content providers. Despite the fact that we are only 9000 users the attention to us isn´t that great because we are a little blimp on their screen, but they (CTU) can help us to be recognized,” Minister Vanterpool stated.
The concerns with Cable TV programmes started after new owners, Caribbean Asset Holdings, LLC Innovative Companies took control of the company in March 2011. Some of the concerns expressed about the new networks include the expanded range of Latin content. However, members of the Latin Community here in the BVI are also peeved about the new Latin stations.
Seth R. Davis, CEO and President of Caribbean Asset Holdings, LLC Innovative Companies had explained that even Spanish advertisements in between English-titled programmes is not coincidental.
“These channels are the Latin American feeds especially created for this area of the Caribbean. Rights for these channels in this geography are geared to a Latin American market, thus advertisers are targeting those Latin American customers,” Davis had noted.
He had explained that there is a problem of available rights to certain networks because the BVI is viewed as being part of the Latin American market.
Cable Issue High On List For MCW – CTU
There have been many complaints about the sort of programming that the Virgin Islands are currently serviced by BVI Cable Television Ltd.
In addition to this, Hon. Vanterpool noted that CTU would also be assisting the VI in the development of a National Information Communication and Technology Policy. He also indicated that explorations were being made in examining various forms of renewable energy for the Territory. Hon. Vanterpool also reiterated that another key focus of the Ministry in the sector was internet security, assuring that steps continued to be made in enhancing this level through various initiatives taken by the Ministry. In reference to the visibility of the VI in the industry, Hon. Vanterpool said “despite our size, we are no less eligible and there is no less possibility that we can be on the cutting edge and leading edge of technology in development” throughout the Caribbean and around the world.
CEO of the TRC, Mr Guy Lester Malone, explained that the DNS root server that is currently in the Territory will provide benefits such as national infrastructure protection, improved performance, greater resilience, emergency response and research optimisation once installed. He revealed that an announcement will follow shortly as the TRC is working towards installing the root server, a feat which will see the VI as one of the first Overseas Territories that would have completed such an initiative.
Ms Lewis in her remarks said that “more and more, our governments are recognising that the traditional endeavours will not serve them in this 21st Century… as a result, they are now looking towards Information Communication Technology (ICT) for building global capacity.” The CTU, she noted, is playing an instrumental role in assisting governments to make efficient and beneficial use of these technologies.
She expressed that there was a need for creativity and innovation in reaping the benefits of these technologies noting that there was a “fundamental lack of understanding and appreciation of how the technological tools that are available can be effectively employed to transform every sphere of endeavour.” The Caribbean ICT Roadshow Initiative, which she explained serves as a catalyst to making many of these transformations possible, was a step taken by the CTU to assist with creating awareness to this end.
TRC welcomes new Chief Financial & Technology Officers
Mr Richards is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. He began his studies in accountancy at the University of the Virgin Islands, completing in London at Emile Woolf College (FTC) in 2004 and qualifying as a Chartered Accountant in 2005. He holds an Associates in Management and Bachelors of Arts in Accounting, has acquired his foundational certification in STEP, and a level five Diploma in Management from the Chartered Management Institute.
Mr Jones has completed Military and College training in various locations around the world and the USA. He has achieved the titles of Master Technician and Systems Engineer with a concentration in Advanced Telecommunications and Computer Programming and Systems installation and is locally recognised as a technology expect. He has also served as Chief Engineer for various cellular and telephone corporation in the US and [British] Virgin Islands.
The Chief Executive Officer, Mr Guy Lester Malone has stated that he is excited in welcoming both Mr Richards and Mr Jones to the TRC team. He also expressed that at this critical time as technology advances, the TRC must ensure that the Service Providers adhere to the conditions of their Unitary License, a very important function of the new CTO. It is extremely important to have these two senior positions filled at such a critical time in the TRC’s development. The Chairman of the TRC also expressed her elation to both joining the team. She stated in particular, that Mr Jones will be very busy as our aim is to embrace new technology trends in the VI while ensuring that the needs and expectations of consumers both (individual and corporate) are met in terms of enabling and facilitating the availability and affordability of adequate telecommunications infrastructure and services. This in turn ensures the long term benefit to the residents and businesses in the Virgin Islands.
The Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) is a statutory body responsible for regulating the telecommunications sector of the Virgin Islands. The TRC advises the Minister for Communications and Works on telecommunications policies internationally and regionally and protects the interests of users of telecommunications services.