‘Very big’ improvement in telco services by 2020: Rio

By Raymond Carl Dela Cruz

July 23, 2019, 8:54 pm

<p><strong>DICT Undersecretary Eliseo Rio Jr.</strong> </p>

DICT Undersecretary Eliseo Rio Jr. 

MANILA—Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Undersecretary Eliseo Rio Jr. on Tuesday said Filipinos will feel a big improvement in telecommunications (telco) services nationwide come 2020.

“Our program for 2020 is that before the end of next year, our people will feel a very big improvement in our telecommunications services nationwide,” Rio said during ‘The Presser’ of the Presidential Communication Operations Office (PCOO) attended by key clusters of the executive branch at the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) building in Quezon City.

The DICT official said the improvements in telco services will stem from a high-speed internet infrastructure to be built in partnership with Facebook and Dito Telecommunity Corporation (Dito), the country's third major telco player.

“The most significant statement of the President during his SONA yesterday was that the selection process for the third telco, there is no corruption that was involved. And he was so serious in this statement, he even swore over the tomb of his father. The first time the President did that in a SONA,” Rio said.

Aside from faster internet services at home, the high-speed internet infrastructure project with Facebook will help provide Filipinos with better free Wi-Fi in public places and better e-government services.

“We will have then a very big bandwidth to be coming from Facebook. Two terabits per second that we can now use for free Wi-Fi and for our e-government to give basic services, online services, to our people even in the remotest area of our country,” Rio said.

“This is actually a program that is instructed by the President on the DICT,” he added.

On November 15, 2017, officials of from the DICT, the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and EDGE (Facebook) signed a landing party agreement for a high-speed internet infrastructure project called the Luzon Bypass Infrastructure that would produce an “ultra-high-speed information highway” connection in the country.

On July 8, 2019, Mislatel Consortium, now Dito Telecommunity, was awarded a permit to operate as the Philippines’ third telco provider by President Duterte in a ceremony at the Malacañang Palace. (PNA)