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A quest to provide truly open, high speed fibre broadband to Malaysians

AvantiKumar | Aug. 2, 2012
Jalenas, Metroverse partnership will invest RM850 million (US$272 million) and penetrate 2.5 million premises in five-year fibre broadband plan.

Heikal M.Ali, ED of Jalenas

PHOTO - Heikal M. Ali, executive director of Jalur Lebar Nasional delivering his speech during the signing ceremony between  Jalenas and Metroverse.

 

A truly open access fibre-to-the-home high speed broadband will help to drive Malaysia's digital economy. Malaysia's Jalenas and Metroverse said this as they signed their technology partnership, which will see the investment of RM850 million (US$272 million) during the next five years.

Speaking in late July 2012, Jalur Lebar Nasional (Jalenas) executive director, Heikal M. Ali said: "In order for Malaysia to enhance its position as a global communications and multimedia hub, there is a significant need for truly open access facilities to improve the competitiveness of our Malaysian industry. It has become increasingly important to transform Malaysian into a vibrant digital economy so as to capitalise on the many opportunities available in the landscape of rapidly changing technologies and intense global and regional competition."

Heikal said the partnership with Metroverse, which is the local partner of IP networking firm Swedish PacketFront, was in tune with the Malaysian government's effort to achieve developed status by 2020 (Vision 2020). Under the agreement, Jalenas would invest RM850 million (US$272 million) for the next five years to provide 'a truly open access, end-to-end, Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH), high speed broadband network that will serve as the fundamental backbone to shape the future of Malaysia's ICT landscape.'

"Malaysia can only compete economically in the years to come if we have a super fast broadband network at our disposal," he said. "As such, a high speed broadband is absolutely vital to turbo charge our national economic potential by securing long term productivity growth and boosting our international competitiveness."

"In the context of a competitive environment, we must make necessary 'value-for-money' investments that enable Malaysians to participate in and benefit from digital economic and global innovation - either that or risk exclusion," said Heikal. "JALENAS would like to play the fundamental role of the private sector in driving the roll-out network infra-structure thus fuelling ongoing innovation."

"Many countries recognise the importance of high speed broadband and have already rolled theirs out or are in the process of doing so. Among these countries are South Korea, Japan, Singapore, China, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, New Zealand and the US," he said.

Established in 2007, Jalenas is a special-purpose vehicle (SPV), which is wholly owned by Highspeed Broadband Technology (HSBT) that designs, builds, owns and operates an independent, open access, fibre-to-home, fixed line high speed broadband network infrastructure.

2.5 million premises in five years

Heikal said: "In terms of global positioning, Malaysia is ranked 57th.  The first five economies are South Korea, followed by Japan, Denmark, Iceland and Singapore. By bringing the digital world to our shores, a truly open access broadband offers a tantalising spectrum of benefits; increased business productivity, improved healthcare, better education, interactive entertainment and greater government efficiency."

"Jalenas is ready to take on the role of providing the necessary infrastructure that can stimulate the country's economic growth," he said. "Having started its deployment at the end of 2011, Jalenas is now aggressively rolling out its services to over 30.000 premises in Kuantan targeted to be completed by 2013. Jalenas already has live connections in Kuantan and end-users are already enjoying an upload-download symmetrical speed of up to 30 Mbps [megabits per second], recognised by the national regulator MCMC [Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission] as the fastest fixed line speed in the east coast to date."

"The company is committed to carrying out its plan of penetrating 2.5 million premises nationwide in a timeframe of five years, added Heikal. "With our extensive collaboration and partnerships with industry players and private groups, we are confident we will be able to contribute to fostering innovation and enhancing national competitiveness."

He added that to date, Jalenas has signed a 20-year Master Service agreement and service level agreement with the following Internet service providers and application service providers - Celcom, JARING, Samata, Tune Talk and P1 (Packet One Networks). Jalenas has also signed an agreement with Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) to accelerate the deployment of Jalenas' fibre optic high speed broadband network infrastructure by using TNB poles. The right to use TNB facilities to extend the last mile reach enables Jalenas to accelerate their network reach and offerings.

 

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