Author Topic: Thailand could become internet gateway  (Read 464 times)

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Offline thaiga

Thailand could become internet gateway
« on: March 30, 2012, 11:55:44 AM »
Thailand looks set to become a key international internetgateway (IIG) hub connecting countries across the region, which is needed in advance of the upcoming Asean Economic Community (AEC) in 2015, say industry leaders.

To serve increasing internet bandwidth demand, CAT Telecom and True Corp plan to spend a combined 70 million baht to expand their IIG connection points to Myanmar and Laos.

Expected 3G licensing in Thailand later this year is driving demand for internet bandwidth here, increasing opportunities for international gateway business in Thailand.

Overall internet bandwidth demand in Thailand surged by 100% per year over the past two years thanks to the surge in mobile connectivity and social networking.

However, bandwidth rental costs dropped each quarter. Thailand’s international gateway market value is expected to grow by 5% this year, up from 3 billion baht in 2011.

Sompol Chanprasert, CAT’s senior executive vice-president for broadband, said the state telecom enterprise will invest 20 million baht this year to expand its fibre-optic connection point between Nakhon Phanom and Khammouane in Laos and from Kanchanaburi to Dawei in Myanmar.

CAT is also planning to acquire shares in ETL, a new telecom service operator in Laos. CAT will soon submit a plan for cabinet approval.

“A slew of major telecom operators are moving to expand in Indochina and capitalise on anticipated surging internet connectivity demand, thanks to the AEC,” Mr Sompol said.

Myanmar is a huge potential market as the country just opened its market to foreign investors, he said.

Rungkiet Kamondetdacha, executive product manager of True International Gateway, said using internet connectivity points from Thailand could reduce service cost due to the country’s strategic location.

This year True will spend 50 million baht to build a new fibre-optic network connecting to Myanmar, after maintaining connection points in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.

Dr Rungkiet said internet traffic to Myanmar is expected to increase significantly, faster than Cambodia, thanks to projected new foreign investments in the country.

True expects to see 10 million baht in revenue from the region, up from 8 million last year, due to increased demand for internet bandwidth.
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