GENEVA (Kyodo) Japan is second after South Korea in terms of access to digital communications technology but has the lowest monthly broadband prices, according to a report released Wednesday by the International Telecommunication Union.

Denmark, Iceland and Hong Kong followed the two Asian countries in terms of the Digital Opportunity Index covering 180 economies and compiled through 11 indicators, including access to telecommunications, affordability, network penetration and the take-up of new technologies like broadband.

Japan had the lowest monthly broadband prices, costing $31.19 per month, or 7 cents per 100 kilobits per second, according to the World Information Society Report 2006.

Countries that have Internet access of 256 Kbps or above more than doubled from 81 in 2002 to 166 last April.

The price of accessing the Internet fell by about 40 percent on average worldwide in the two years since 2003, it said.

The number of mobile phones used worldwide has surged from around 11 million units in 1995 to 2.14 billion units in 2005.

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