A LAWMAKER filed a bill last week pushing for the rollout of wired internet service in far-flung areas, to be funded by government and public-private partnerships.
Albay Rep. Jose Ma. Clemente S. Salceda said in his explanatory note that rural areas are often left out in cable networks as these are “considered less commercially viable by the big telecommunication operators” given the high capital required and low customer base.
“Broadband is now basic infrastructure — as basic to economic progress as roads or bridges. Especially when we have a burgeoning work-from-home service sector, access to broadband is critical,” Mr. Salceda said in a Viber message.
He said that satellite technology, in terms of latency and speed, “can still be inferior” to broadband.
“It’s not so much a matter of cost comparison — best to have all options. But broadband is more appropriate for the service economy’s needs,” he added.
Under House Bill No. 6922, a subscriber will have to shoulder costs for wirings, signal amplifiers, as well as the household connecting equipment such as a router or modem.
Mr. Salceda said the envisioned National Broadband Network must be government-initiated but could allow public-private partnerships, with incentives to attract private investment. — Beatriz Marie D. Cruz