THE Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) launched the National Broadband Program (NBP) Resiliency Route to build a high-speed broadband network for quality, affordable, and widespread connectivity in the country.
DICT said 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.
"(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, September 27, 2021.
The NBP will play an integral role in the continuity of internet connectivity to the busiest areas of Metro Manila, Metro Cebu, and Metro Davao, and soon nationwide.
DICT said in its website that through the NBP, the agency will deploy broadband capacity across the nation, especially in areas that are remote, inaccessible, and considered unprofitable by the private sector.
With this, the government will have access to cheaper and more reliable Internet services that will reduce government spending on Internet subscription.
This will begin to happen once the first phase of the DICT NBP is completed. Through the program, government agencies can avail themselves of Internet service at P50 per megabits per second (Mbps) of Internet bandwidth 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. 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, posing a projected savings of around P34 billion in government internet expenses, estimated in 2020.
In perspective, neighboring countries with similar initiatives, such as Indonesia, Australia, and New Zealand allotted significantly higher budgets for their National Broadband Network.
Indonesia is 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)