Promoting inclusive broadband through Village Broadband Internet Project (Net Pracharat) in Thailand
The Village Broadband Internet Project (Net Pracharat) aims to strengthen the national broadband network and provide affordable high-speed Internet access to all villages in Thailand by 2019. The government is investing in building high-speed Internet networks, using fiber optic cables, in remote villages that lack such services. This will enable local residents to have access to useful information and services on many topics, such as education, public health and government services. It is also expected to offer business opportunities through e-commerce which will generate employment and income in local communities, resulting in better living standards.
The Ministry of Digital Economy and Society (MDES) has assigned Telephone of Thailand (TOT) Public Company Limited to implement the project. In December 2017, the installation of fiber optic networks to 24,700 target villages in remote areas was completed. In addition, the government also provided free public Wi-Fi hotspots at the speed of 30/10 Mbps (Download/Upload) for each village. MDES is currently working with the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commissions (NBTC), the Thai telecom regulator, to expand high-speed networks to all villages in Thailand.
To increase awareness and promote the use of the constructed high-speed Internet network, MDES has developed curricula on Internet fundamentals (Basic Use of Internet) and online applications. In addition, MDES have provided trainings to 1,033 officers from the Office of the Non-Formal and Informal Education and provided training to around 100,000 residents in the villages covered by the project. As of 30 September 2018, there were about 4 million users registered to access Internet via Wi-Fi Net Pracharat.
For more information, please visit https://netpracharat.com/Netpracharat_EN/one-page/.
For more information on the Asia-Pacific Information Superhighway (AP-IS) which promotes inclusive broadband, please visit https://www.unescap.org/our-work/ict-disaster-risk-reduction/asia-pacific-information-superhighway.