Govt focuses on full 4G deployment nationwide

Satellite services to be utilised as an alternative to the 5G and 4G Internet networks 


THE government is working to use satellite services to provide Internet networks to the entire community in the country regardless of hilly areas or sea waters, said Deputy Minister of Communications and Multimedia Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin (picture). 

He said the use of the satellite is an alternative to the 5G and 4G Internet networks, which are in the process of ensuring that all areas received the coverage and the country needs to complete the 4G network first before switching to the 5G network. 

“4G connectivity alone takes at least two years to be fully completed. So, about this 5G network, we leave it to the company to manage. The government now wants to focus on providing 4G Internet services first. 

“Currently, many complaints are received from people who complain that their areas in the interior do not have an Internet network, fishermen at sea complain that there is no Internet network,” he told reporters in Subang Jaya yesterday.

On the implementation of 5G, Zahidi said it is not as easy as expected because the companies that manage it have to go through various layers, from the state and local governments to installing the facility, unlike other services. 

“Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) for example does not face a problem installing electricity because there are already electricity poles. Similarly, to enter the water supply, the pipes are already there. 

“5G and 4G Internet services do not have that facility from the beginning. We have to work one by one, then we can provide an Internet network. So, this is what I said, it takes time.” 

He also said the government does not want the 5G deployment to be monopolised. 

“We don’t want a monopoly. It is not a monopoly, but when the system is not the same, it is up to the company. but as far as we know, this company will open tenders to other companies, and it is not a monopoly,” he said. 

Last Friday, Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa said his ministry and the Ministry of Finance will table a Cabinet ministers’ memorandum next month to resolve the issues relating to Digital Nasional Bhd “once and for all” as the choice between a single wholesale network or dual wholesale network system has become a debate. 

He hopes to resolve it following the findings of the National Digital Economy and Fourth Industrial Revolution Council meeting last Thursday. 

“If we allow it to prolong, it will affect the 5G rollout programme which is a key factor to Malaysia’s Digital Economy Framework of Action and implementation of MyDIGITAL,” he told the media after attending an Appreciation Ceremony of Volunteers of “Operasi Bantu Hingga Selesai”.