Cheaper internet soon for government offices

·2 min read

THE Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) on Monday, Sept. 27, 2021, launched the National Broadband Program (NBP) Resiliency Route to build a high-speed broadband network that will provide quality, affordable and widespread connectivity in the country.

The NBP Resiliency Route is a supplemental infrastructure that will serve as a redundancy and protection loop connecting to the international gateway access through Singapore to ensure continuous connectivity in Metro Manila, Metro Cebu, Metro Davao and, eventually, nationwide.

“(It) serves as the government’s blueprint to accelerate the deployment of fiber optic cables and wireless technology across the country. This program also aims to make the internet in the Philippines an affordable and inclusive asset available to all Filipinos,” DICT Secretary Gregorio Honasan II said during the nationwide launch on Monday.

On its website, the DICT said the new infrastructure will deploy broadband capacity across the nation, especially in areas that are remote, inaccessible and considered unprofitable by the private sector.

Through this, government agencies will have access to more reliable internet services at only P50 per megabits per second (Mbps) per month.

For phase 1, the DICT will activate the cable landing station in Baler, Aurora and connect to the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) node in San Fernando, La Union through the Luzon Bypass Infrastructure.

The DICT will then activate and light up four DICT nodes and 15 NGCP nodes that will connect with the various DICT equipment.

From there, DICT will be able to provide bandwidth to nearby govnet clients and free-WiFi beneficiaries.

The proposed phase 2 of the NBP will cover Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, projecting savings of around P34 billion in government internet expenses, estimated in 2020.

The DICT said neighboring countries with similar initiatives, such as Indonesia, Australia, and New Zealand allotted significantly higher budgets for their national broadband networks.

Indonesia was reported to have allocated over $22 billion (P1.07 trillion) for its five-year national broadband plan, while Australia and New Zealand allocated around $37 billion (P1.79 trillion) and $1.19 billion (P58 billion), respectively, DICT said.

Other countries such as Singapore are improving their systems by spending around $550 million (P26.72 billion) and opening up their network to all service providers. (JOB)

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