AFFORDABLE PACKAGE: Pahang, Kelantan, Terengganu, Sabah and Sarawak folk to benefit from 1Malaysia initiative
KUALA LUMPUR 05 September 2012: AFFORDABLE broadband plans, ranging from RM20 to RM25 per month for a wireless connection and RM 38 for a wired one, will be introduced in Pahang, Kelantan, Terengganu, Sabah and Sarawak after Malaysia Day on Sept 16.
The latest initiative was formulated to empower locals and enabling greater access to the cyber world, said Information, Communications and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim.
"Greater broadband penetration is anticipated via this 1Malaysia Affordable Broadband Package, which will be provided by telecommunication service providers in the country.
"Packages devised under this plan is targeted at the rural community as well as those residing in states that have a lower broadband penetration in comparison with the national penetration rate."
He said this after launching the 1Malaysia Affordable Broadband Package initiative here yesterday.
Rais said although the current broadband penetration rate in the country, which was close to 64 per cent, was impressive, more effort was needed to channel similar penetration wavelength to states with a rate lower.
"The increase in the broadband penetration rate is attributed to the many initiatives undertaken by the ministry and the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission.
"We now have incorporated service providers into the effort to witness broadband penetration in the under-served markets."
Rais said affordability was also a key issue at the five selected states and the government embarked on the programme to engage service providers to formulate cheaper broadband plans.
He stressed that the effort was also to promote healthy competition among telecommunications service providers.
The broadband penetration rate in the five mentioned states hovers at around 40 per cent.
"We will see how the response is from the people in the five states first before mulling on expanding it further to other places."
Rais added that periodic meetings will be held with service providers participating in the plan to identify problems and to look into feedback from consumers in the five states.
The new broadband package will come in a starter sim pack carrying the 1Malaysia Affordable Broadband Package logo.
By YISWAREE PALANSAMY