Duterte gives green light to P75-B national broadband program

Pres. Rodrigo Duterte approved during a Cabinet meeting on Monday, March 6, the P75-billion national broadband plan that will be implemented by the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT).

Pres. Rodrigo Duterte

Pres. Rodrigo Duterte

Along with the broadband project, Duterte also signed an executive order creating a government portal which will serve as an online one-stop-shop for government transactions.

The DICT is expected to come out with a final national broadband plan by the second quarter of 2017. The project is expected to be finished in about two to three years.

With the approval of the national broadband plan, Sen. Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino called on the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) to present it to stakeholders, experts, and other concerned groups for suggestion and scrutiny.

“Masaya tayo’t inaprubahan na ng pamahalaan ang national broadband plan na makatutulong upang mapaganda ang kalidad at mapalawak ang sakop ng Internet sa bansa,” said Aquino, chairman of the Committee on Science and Technology.

“Now that the plan is approved, we call on DICT to present it to stakeholders, experts and other concerned organizations for scrutiny and suggestion to ensure that it will be an effective one,” he added.

According to the lawmaker, the committee will conduct a hearing where the DICT can provide details of the plan.

During last year’s committee hearing, Aquino said the DICT presented three options to implement the P75-billion plan, including its preferred way of investing in Internet infrastructure, like fiber-optic cables, especially in underserved and hard-to-reach areas.

Under this option, the government will also use the existing infrastructure of current players while encouraging new players to develop new Internet infrastructure.

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