USAID made Macedonia the first wireless country

Back in late 2005, USAID helped Macedonia become the first wireless country (of its size) in the world. By offering to connect every school in the country to via wireless internet, USAID was able to bring in competition that eventually resulted in a decrease in the cost of wireless internet by 75 percent. This video is part of USAID's 25 year anniversary in Macedonia.

Video Transcript 
in 2004 only 8% of Macedonian households were connected to the Internet access to broadband was mainly available in urban areas and by just one service provider most primary and secondary schools in Macedonia didn't have internet access and we know being offline meant not having access to information needed for the 21st century job market US aid wanted to make the internet more accessible to people and especially to schools so teachers could learn from one another and students could access the information they needed to excel so US aid introduced competition in the telecom market by selecting an Internet service provider that would bring high-speed Internet to every corner of the country using an innovative approach on dotnet used the existing 140 national broadcasting agencies radio towers to create a unique network that connected urban and rural areas across Macedonia primary and secondary schools were the first to be connected to the wireless system that meant students and teachers could access information from anywhere in the world in the next wave US aid added and connected an additional 100 sites including all universities student dormitories some government offices and a select few NGOs by the end of 2005 every corner of Macedonia was covered by the new wireless network even Louie Bono was connected the cost of Internet dropped by nearly 75% which meant almost everyone could afford to connect to the Internet Macedonia became known as the first wireless country in the world that's what true friends are for 25 years US aid in Macedonia

Last updated: October 04, 2019

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