The Importance of Technological Leapfrogging for Afghanistan

Topics: Mobile phone, Landline, Telephone line Pages: 2 (523 words) Published: December 21, 2012
Examine the importance of technological leapfrogging for developing countries.

Technology leapfrogging is a term used to describe the bypassing of technological stages that others (other countries) have gone through. Leapfrogging involves the technical aspects of implementing new technologies in the existing technological environment. It may be the process by which the development gap is reduced because it is the richer, more technologically advanced nations which have paid the costs to develop the new technology and the poorer, developing countries who can adopt these technologies and not pay the cost of researching and developing them.

Mobile phones are frequently held up as a good example of technology's ability to transform the fortunes of people in the developing world. In places with bad roads, few trains and scattered land lines, mobile phones substitute for travel, allow price data to be distributed more quickly and easily, enable traders to reach wider markets and generally make it easier to do business.

Using the example of Afghanistan, 72% of Afghans are now covered by a mobile telephone signal, whereas only 1% have access to a landline. The constant conflict in Afghanistan since the Russian invasion in 1979 has left the country littered with landmines and unexploded bombs. Therefore laying landline telephone cables would be extremely dangerous. Because of this any attempt to lay landlines would take years and be prohibitively expensive.

For this country to develop, communications must be improved, trading must be improved, business must be improved. To solve these issues, Roshan, the countries chief telephone provider invested in bringing already established western telephone communications (mobiles) into the country.

In 2008, Roshan had 2 million mobile telephone subscribers in Afghanistan. So by the use of mobile phones the country has been able to start increase trade. There is no terrorist risk to security, so mobile phones have...
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