|Image: U.S. Central|
The focus of our project is to utilize fiber optic technology to implement social and economic development initiatives that will increase FSM's exports and reduce the reliance of certain imports. Our proposal focuses in developing initiatives in education, health care, capacity building in the public sector, public infrastructure development and maintenance, and private sector development.
There are several telemedicine programs in the FSM, but fiber optic technology will help implement programs that will diagnose and treat patients in distant locations, monitor patients with chronic illnesses or diseases, create electronic medical records for FSM citizens, and provide essential healthcare information and valuable resources.
Capacity in the public sector includes creating a comprehensive system for national and state governments to communicate, cooperate, and collaborate more efficiently. One outcome is to streamline government operations and create an Institute for e-Government to provide timely and necessary information and services to FSM citizens. Regarding public infrastructure development and maintenance, fiber optic technology will enhance operations at the FSM's airports, seaports, and provide value-added public services including telecommunication and high-speed Internet services.
According to the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat's Pacific Regional Digital Strategy, "The Pacific has problems caused by large distances, small scale and scattered populations and markets, and a low level of investments in telecommunications and human resources. All these problems can be addressed and the development of ICTs accelerated, by selection of appropriate mechanisms for cooperation, market integration and provision of services on a regional basis." The first step in overcoming the specific challenges in the FSM is creating a realistic development plan utilizing fiber optic technology.
FSM President Emanuel Mori has continuously stated that broadband connectivity is one of his administration’s priorities. Our proposal to utilize fiber optic technology for social and economic development that will help FSM's citizens to become more self-sustaining and less reliant on outside resources. There are several examples where fiber optic technology has benefited countries similar to the Federated States of Micronesia and I invite you to share your comments and recommendations.
Aaron Rose is a board member, corporate advisor, and co-founder of great companies. He also serves as the editor of GT Perspectives, an online forum focused on turning perspective into opportunity.