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National broadband penetration rate reaches 77.3%

June 30, 2016

Minister Salleh Said Keruak says the government has been actively promoting the use of communications and multimedia as an accelerator of economic growth and development, and to bridge the digital divide between rural and urban communities.

Salleh-Keruak_internet_600KUALA LUMPUR: The national broadband penetration rate has reached 77.3% as of the fourth quarter last year, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Salleh Said Keruak.

He attributed this to the government’s commitment and efforts to bring broadband to the whole nation as part of its plan to raise national competitiveness and to drive the country towards the digital era.

Salleh said the government had been actively promoting the use of communications and multimedia as an accelerator of economic growth and development, and to bridge the digital divide between rural and urban communities.

“In March 2010, the government embarked on a National Broadband Implementation Strategy … the strategy involved addressing both the supply and demand aspects of broadband.

“To address the supply aspect, broadband infrastructure and services were rolled out throughout the nation with delivery of service via wired and wireless connectivity whilst the Universal Service Provision initiative was deployed to expand existing broadband and cellular coverage,” he said at the launch of the new Yes 4G LTE service here today.

Present were YTL Corporation Berhad Executive Chairman Yeoh Tiong Lay, and YTL Corporation Berhad Managing Director and YTL Communications Sdn Bhd Executive Chairman Francis Yeoh.

Salleh said the government had been single-minded in its efforts to ensure the success of this plan, rolling out high-speed broadband infrastructure via the HSBB Project as well as the Broadband for General Population (BBGP) and Sub-Urban Broadband (SUBB) projects.

“Rural communities are the beneficiaries of the Wireless Village and WiFi 1Malaysia programmes. However, there are still parts of the country, particularly rural and remote areas, where there is no internet access.

“Speeds are still an issue and the cost of mobile devices and service plans today, although reducing, are still considered quite expensive by segments of the economy,” he said.

Salleh said the ministry was committed to ensuring cheaper, faster and wider coverage internet for all Malaysians, not just for those in the urban areas, but also for those in the rural areas.

In this regard, he said, the government would look for the best possible players able to invest, innovate and deliver.

“Industries must look beyond commercial considerations and work with the government to achieve the targets that have been set. When we have fulfilled the Awareness, Attractiveness and Affordability criteria set in the National Broadband Initiative (NBI) strategy, then the demand will be there.

“In this respect, I am pleased to note that YTL has joined the other telcos on the 4G bandwagon. With 4G comes improved access and speeds that will open up a whole new level of possibilities for individuals and businesses,” he added.

Salleh said apart from that, the company (YTL) would also offer the lowest data plans in Malaysia, as well as in the Asia-Pacific region.

He said together with all the other telcos, all these efforts augured well for the nation’s future, and this would certainly accelerate the achievement of the government’s NBI to increase national broadband penetration and help reduce the cost of devices and utilisation charges to make it more affordable to all consumers.

“I hope that with this reassurance, our industry players will continue to invest in our broadband infrastructure. This is the last push towards achieving our 11th Malaysia Plan (11MP) targets,” said Salleh.

– BERNAMA


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