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Wiley Rein Hosts Telecommunications Program for Iraqi Delegation

September 12, 2013

Wiley Rein hosted a two-day program this week for a group of telecommunications regulators from Iraq, who are working to improve their country’s voice and data networks with assistance from the U.S. government.

The program was part of a two-week seminar the U.S. Commerce Department’s Commercial Law Development office is sponsoring, with assistance from the Federal Communications Commission, in an effort to help the government of Iraq facilitate private-sector growth and improve citizens’ access to high-speed wireless services.  Wiley Rein attorney Keith S. Watson is also assisting with the seminar on a pro bono basis, on behalf of the International Senior Lawyers Project.

The events hosted by Wiley Rein included an industry panel on best regulatory practices to encourage telecommunications investment in developing countries.  The panel was led by Ambassador David A. Gross, who chairs the firm’s International Telecommunications Group and served as the U.S. State Department’s Coordinator for International Communications and Information Policy from 2001 to 2009.  Amb. Gross lauded the Iraq delegation as engaged and well-informed and stated that the post-war development of a robust telecommunications infrastructure was one of the Iraq Government’s most significant successes.

Mr. Watson helped organize sessions on media regulation and broadband licensing issues as well as an interactive exercise on spectrum management, in which the Iraqi officials played the roles of various stakeholder groups. During the exercise, the officials made presentations to members of a fictional country’s regulatory commission, focusing on the allocation of licenses to deploy next-generation wireless services.