By SHIRLEY MAULUDU
INTERNET users can expect a further reduction in rates after the completion of the Coral Sea Submarine Cable (CS2) in January, officials say.
Former Minister for Information, Communication and Technology Rainbo Paita told The National yesterday it was “very positive” for Telikom and bmobile.
In July, Telikom and bmobile users saw a reduction of between 70 and 80 per cent in rates.
“We took a bold step in reducing the prices in the hope that we will attract more volume in terms of customers – and the subscribers have really gone up,” Paita said.
It is yet to be determined how much it will be further reduced by in January.
PNG DataCo Ltd managing director Paul Komboi said in a statement their mission was to improve and expand affordable internet access to all the people in PNG.
Commercial manager Une O’Ome recently said CS2 was a sub-project under the National Transmission Network (NTN) to connect the country to modern transmission infrastructure.
He told the recent Innovation PNG 2019 summit: “We’ve got the connectivity already, the equipment is now being installed and is currently under testing. “So the plan now is following all the tests and the trials that may be run around December, we would have the initial 100 gigabytes per second link up and ready for commercial use by Jan 1, 2020.”
Already, Telikom and bmobile have seen about 60,000 subscribers benefiting from the reduction in internet costs announced in July.
Meanwhile, Paita said the ICT blue print was now before Cabinet for deliberation.
It is expected to transform the country’s ICT sector. Paita highlighted a number of factors including number portability and code sharing issues in the industry.
“It’s up to the incoming minister (Timothy Masiu) whether to (develop) the blueprint which had taken us five months to put together,” Paita said.
“(It’s) a very detailed blueprint of how the ICT sector should progress going forward.
“We have done some consultations with the many industry players.
“We looked at things like number portability, code sharing, and all those issues.”
Masiu said he was not new to the industry.
“I’ve been in the industry for a long time having brought up through the systems of NBC (National Broadcasting Corporation), to board level and now minister.
“I know there are some things we need to do,” Masiu said.
By SHIRLEY MAULUDU