Kembara Digital Malaysia an initiative to help Malaysians face digital era - Gobind

Last update: 27/07/2019

IPOH, July 27 (Bernama) -- In another move to help Malaysians face the digital era, the Communications and Multimedia Ministry today launched the Kembara Digital Malaysia (KDM) Programme showcasing the various advantages of communications technology and digital services to the people and the country.

In his speech at the launching of the initiative here today, its minister Gobind Singh Deo stressed that his ministry was keenly aware of the need to improve the telecommunications infrastructure to ensure that Malaysia is able to provide the people, business and industry players connectivity globally.

He cited the World Economic Forum findings to make his case as to why Malaysia should continue to strive for greater broadband penetration.

"The World Economic Forum Report stated  that a 10 per cent increase in a developing nation’s broadband penetration contributed 1.38 per cent to the  Gross Domestic Product (GDP) or RM18 billion in the Malaysian context,” said Gobind.

In providing broadband telecommunications for Malaysians, the minister drew attention that it was not only targeted at urban areas but also for people living in the outskirts.

Taking Perak as an example,  Gobind  said that as of last May, 174,000 broadband port connections were installed throughout the state covering urban areas and the outskirts and that 49 per cent had been subscribed to by the residents.

"I very much welcome the people of Perak using the broadband services provided so that they become a more informed society and capitalise on the benefits from the advancements made in digital technology,” he said.

The launching of the two-day programme at  Bulatan Sultan Azlan Shah, Meru here was officiated by Perak Multimedia, Communications, NGOs and Information Committee chairman, Hasnul Zulkarnain Abd Munaim , who represented Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu.

In the speech, Gobind shone the spotlight on what he described as a 'very encouraging'  achievement of the 'Double the Speed, Half the Price' initiative.

"This initiative succeeded in bringing the price down by 49 per cent and increased broadband speed by up to three times,” he said, adding that it also increased demand for fixed broadband services by 21.7 per cent within six months.

Gobind  said the importance placed on broadband  penetration was because it was a determining factor for the nation’s continued economic growth.

He also explained that the government was committed  to recognising connectivity as a utility, just like water and electricity supply.

"This is important to spur growth in the economic, education, health, transportation and smart cities sectors and the like,” he said.

The KDM programme among others aims to raise awareness and knowledge among the people on the importance and methods of utilising communications technology apart from spurring digital growth especially at the grassroots level.

It also aims to narrow the communication gap between the government and people apart from building an informed society through dissemination of information speedily, accurately and meticulously.

Fifty booths have been provided for the exhibitors consisting of broadband service providers. manufacturers/distributors of ICT equipment and content and federal and state government agencies.

-- BERNAMA