Argentina opens debate on convergence

During the opening ceremony of the 2018 Jornadas Internacionales conference, Andrés Ibarra, Argentina’s Secretary of Modernization, highlighted the actions that the government is carrying out in the telecommunications area. “Connectivity is the key to development and inclusion,” the official said.
“We finished 30,000 km of illuminated fiber, which serves more than 500 localities through the Federal Internet Plan. This Plan, like the one providing connectivity to schools, is carried out by Arsat and we have exceeded 950 schools connected to satellite internet,” he explained.
Another initiative was the installation of 500 points to provide free WiFi and the implementation of an online contracting system for state tenders, which allows “increasing transparency”.
According to the official, “today the world is facing a true digital revolution and telecommunications services are moving towards a convergent model.” Ibarra also said “the cable industry is an important ally of the State to connect all Argentines. We are generating the conditions to favor the necessary investments,” he concluded.
In turn, Walter Burzaco, president of the Argentine Cable TV Association (ATVC), mentioned two specific problems: the tax burden and the piracy. “Argentina is still shown as a country with an important tax burden. But our sector is well above average. We have the pressure of the collective management societies for authorial issues, which want to get more advantages and try to invent new burdens. There are also the specific rates of ICT and municipal services. At the same time, the macroeconomic swings do not favor investments in cutting-edge technology, which still pay luxury taxes and import tariffs.”
Sergio Veiga, president of the Audiovisual Signals Producers and Programmers Chamber (CAPPSA), stressed the need for regulations that “strongly punish” content piracy “and combat it efficiently”.
The 2018 edition of International Conferences, organized by ATVC and CAPPSA, is held at the Hilton Hotel in Buenos Aires on September 26 and 27.