The Sunday Leader

$ 10 Mn. Subsidy For Broadband Rollout

The Government is offering a U.S.$ 10 million subsidy for a data services provider to launch an islandwide broadband backbone.

Reshan Dewapura, Chief Operating Officer, Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (I.C.T.A.) told The Sunday Leader that a tender in this regard has already been called, with rollout expected during the first quarter of next year, and project completion a year later.

A World Bank study said that a 10% growth in broadband penetration would add on a 1.3% g.d.p. growth to a country.

Dewapura said that programmes like the Government’s nenasala projects have helped broadband to reach 20% of the country’s populace.

In regard to the broadband backbone tender call, he said that the successful data services provider would also have to give Wifi wireless connectivity to households in order to cover the “last mile” as it were.

The operator will cover his cost by charging the consumer for this service.

“Some operators already have their networks rolled-out, so the costs incurred in going broadband islandwide would be relatively cheaper compared to what it would cost a new operator to start on such a project from scratch,” he said.

A number of Sri Lanka’s telecoms operators are also data services providers. Data services include internet connectivity.

Government’s ongoing nenasala project is a programme to take internet to the rural areas, where the project would be operated by village societies as a principle objective of sharing costs. I.C.T.A. is the Government agency set-up to promote I.C.T. in the island. It comes under the Presidential Secretariat.

3 Comments for “$ 10 Mn. Subsidy For Broadband Rollout”

  1. mk

    if this were to actually happen, this would be the first and ONLY useful project, launched by ICTA to date!

    • Maleesha

      ICTA intiated so many important projects and recived world awards for some. 1919, Nenasala, Birth certificate project, Lanka Government Network, lanka gate and lots of social ICT oriented projects are clear evidence for that. mk can get more information from http://www.icta.lk website if he has internet access

  2. Hans

    Apparently, the person who released the news in this article (Dewapura?) doesn’t know head or tail what a network backbone is nor what wireless connectivity is. He proposes last mile access by Wifi?? These people at ICTA are a bunch of money eating, good for nothing loathers who pretend to be IT professionals, while the real pros are watching their practical jokes from outside. And these idiots think broadband is just providign 24/7 net access for a flat fee. They should be shown the real BB nets in Japan or South Korea (best in the world, with 10 Gbps speeds) and I am pretty sure they’ll faint. ICTA is a useless agency.

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