Telcos urged to build more new infrastructure in rural areas

Last update: 13/12/2018

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 13 (Bernama) -- Telecommunication companies have been told to build more new infrastructure in rural areas, including fibre optic networks and communication towers to achieve the 98 per cent target covering Malaysia’s populated areas with average broadband speeds of up to 30Mbps by 2023.

Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Eddin Syazlee Shith said this also needed the cooperation of all stakeholders including land owners, state governments and local authorities.

The target was set up under the recently announced National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan (NFCP).

“It involves regular planning at the village, district and state levels to ensure that the coverage of broadband services can be provided to the community as a whole," he said during an oral question-and- answer session at Dewan Negara in reply to a question from Senator Datuk Fahariyah Md Nordin.

Eddin Syazlee said currently under the Suburban Broadband (SUBB) project and Rural Broadband (RBB) project which provides high speed broadband facilities, a total of 528 exchanges are being upgraded nationwide that are expected to be completed in 2019.

"In addition, the government is also expanding its mobile broadband coverage nationwide, especially in rural areas under the  mobile broadband coverage initiative involving the construction of new communications towers and the upgrading of existing ones.

"A total of 1,769 new communications towers have been completed and activated with 2G and 3G services while 266 towers are in the implementation stage nationwide especially in rural areas.

He added that 4,896 existing communications towers were upgraded to 3G/ 4G mobile broadband services while 667 existing communication towers were still being upgraded.