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The expansion of mobile Internet connectivity helped to buoy the global ICT sector and the global economy as a whole during the recent period of sustained economic malaise, according to the OECD.

"The ICT goods sector declined for the first time since the dot-com era in 2001-02, but is quickly recovering in some OECD countries," the OECD says. "ICT services, in contrast, fared much better than ICT manufacturing, [and has] maintained strong growth in several countries throughout the recent crisis."

It says that the top ICT firms have fared well throughout the crisis. "Telecommunication service providers made up the largest component of the top 250 ICT firms, followed by equipment manufacturers." However, "Internet firms accounted for only seven of the top 250 ICT firms by revenues."

The strength of the ICT sector has been reflected in its share of investment. According to the OECD. "In 2011, ICTs accounted for more than 50 percent of all venture capital in the United States, the world's largest market. Venture capital investment is at its highest level, with the exception of anomalous peak in 2000 during the dot-com bubble."

The OECD's views are contained in its just-released 300 page Internet Economy Outlook 2012. It replaces the OECD's long running Information Technology Outlook and updates the key data series from the 2010 edition of the IT Outlook. The OECD describes it as "The first in a series designed to provide a broad overview of trends, policy developments and data on the expanding impact of the Internet on the economy and society."

It "provides data on the top 250 firms in the broader ICT sector to help put the growth of the Internet economy into context and perspective...provides a forward-looking perspective on recent trends in ICT technologies, applications and services, and offers predictions for development over the next few years, highlighting particular trends that could have a substantial impact on future policy."

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Stuart Corner

 

Tracking the telecoms industry since 1989, Stuart has been awarded Journalist Of The Year by the Australian Telecommunications Users Group (twice) and by the Service Providers Action Network. In 2010 he received the 'Kester' lifetime achievement award in the Consensus IT Writers Awards and was made a Lifetime Member of the Telecommunications Society of Australia. He was born in the UK, came to Australia in 1980 and has been here ever since.

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