AI Repository Project
WSIS Prizes Contest 2019 Nominee

The Village Broadband Internet Project


Description

The main objective of the Net Pracharat project is to strengthen National Broadband Network by expanding high-speed Internet network to reach every village in the country, so that local Thai people who live in the remote areas will be able to access broadband or high-speed Internet as those who live in the cities. In December 2017, MDES and Telephone of Thailand Public Company Limited (TOT) completed the installation of fiber cable network to 24,700 target rural villages throughout the country.
In addition to provide network, the government equipped Thai people with Wi-Fi for community to provide free public Wi-Fi hotspots at the speed of 30/10 Mbps (Download/Upload). As of November 2018, there are about 4.5 million users registered to access Wi-Fi Net Pracharat. Newly registered increase around 200,000-300,000 users in every month.

To increase awareness and promote the use of the Net Pracharat, MDES has developed curricula on Internet fundamentals (Basic Use of Internet), and Internet applications for career building and income supplement. As of now, MDES has provided trainings to 1,033 officers from the Office of the Non-Formal and Informal Education (NFE). This was to create a leading group of Net Pracharat trainers. Then, these leading trainers went back to their communities to provide trainings to around 100,000 local people in Net Pracharat village areas. In addition, in collaboration with the Ministry of Interior (MOI), the trainings already reached 1,000,000 local people in September 2018.

With Net Pracharat, local people can access useful information and services on many areas, such as education, public health, and government services – leading to improvement in quality of life. It will also offer local people opportunities to e-commerce, the use of online shops, in order to generate employment and income in local communities. With these results achieved, Net Pracharat is a driving force that propel country toward a path of long-term stability, prosperity, and sustainability.

Project website

http://netpracharat.com/en/about-netpracharat


Images

Action lines related to this project
  • AL C2. Information and communication infrastructure 2019
  • AL C3. Access to information and knowledge
Sustainable development goals related to this project
  • Goal 9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Coverage
  • Thailand

Status

Completed

Start date

January 2017

End date

December 2018


Target beneficiary group(s)
  • Remote and rural communities
  • Youth, Students, Start-Up, Young entrepreneurs, SMEs, Healthcare, Civil governments

Replicability

The Net Pracharat project can be replicated in the same stream where all stakeholders are running the same structural processes and implementations. We can apply the Net Pracharat project implementation model to develop other digital infrastructure projects (e.g., Smart City, Submarine Cable systems, and 5G trials). For example, MDES is now implementing other two digital infrastructure development projects that use the same model as Net Pracharat.

1. The Broadband Internet for Local Schools and Hospitals project – The main objective is to expanding Net Pracharat Network to rural schools and hospitals countries. MDES has assigned TOT, a state enterprise who implemented Net Pracharat, to install fiber optic cable networks to local schools and hospitals that have not fiber optic networks. This will promote the use of digital technologies in education and public health services.

2. The ASEAN Digital Hub project – This project aims at enhancing Thailand international telecommunications network to support the increasing demand of internet usage in Thailand and ASEAN countries, and driving Thailand toward being an Internet Connectivity Hub in ASEAN. MDES has assigned CAT Telecom, a state enterprise that specializes in international telecommunications networks for project implementation. The project scope consists of upgrading existing domestic terrestrial and international submarine cable systems with higher bandwidth, and constructing a new international submarine cable that connects Thailand to countries in the Asia Pacific region. With the ASEAN Digital Hub project implementation, Thailand and ASEAN countries will be able to have sufficient international telecommunications networks that are stable, diverse, and sufficient to support the increasing demand of interconnectivity.


Sustainability

Village broadband Internet project (Net Pracharat Project) is one of Thailand national flagship projects ensuring reliable digital infrastructure and equitable access to information and communication technology throughout the country. As such, it promotes the effective use of ICT, facilitate lifelong learning and skills development, creating enabling environment for digital innovations as well as boosting the investment in rural communities. which will propel the nation toward the stability, prosperity, and sustainability. With Net Pracharat, local people can access useful information and services on many areas, such as education, public health, and government services – leading to improvement in quality of life. It will also offer local people opportunities to e-commerce, the use of online shops, in order to generate employment and income in local communities. With these results achieved, Net Pracharat is a driving force that propel country toward a path of long-term stability, prosperity, and sustainability.

In addition, to make use of the fiber optic cable network constructed in the project (Net Pracharat Network) at its full potential, MDES follows the Open Access Network (OAN) model by allowing any telecommunications (or Internet) service providers who obtain licenses from NBTC to connect and use the Net Pracharat network without fees to provide last mile Internet service to customers with fair and affordable price for local people. This is to promote infrastructure sharing that helps reducing infrastructure investment cost in rural areas. Furthermore, the government will use Universal Service Obligation (USO) funds to support maintenance of Net Pracharat network for 5 years to sustain the Net Pracharat project. This will foster the growth of broadband Internet access market in the areas until they turn to be commercial zone that can be self-sustaining without government support in the future.


WSIS values promotion

Net Pracharat project places an emphasis on providing equitable and affordable access to information and communication technology (or digital technology). It is a flagship project that mainly related to enhancing the quality of the digital infrastructure, which is a crucial factor to develop innovation and improve the quality of lives of people in remote areas. This is to enable Thai people across the country to access digital technology equally. With Broadband Internet access, people can make greater use of broadband to access useful information and services on many areas, such as education, public health, and government services, leading to improvement in well-being of individuals, communities and people. It will also offer local people opportunities to e-commerce, the use of online shops, in order to generate employment and income in local communities, accelerating the social and economic progress of the country. With these results achieved, Net Pracharat is a driving force that drive Thailand to stability, prosperity, and sustainability.


Entity name

Ministry of Digital Economy and Society (MDES)

Entity country—type

Thailand Government

Entity website

http://www.mdes.go.th/view/10/home

Partners

1) Telephone of Thailand Public Company Limited (TOT), 2) National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commissions (NBTC), 3) Metropolitan Electricity Agency (MEA), 4) Provincial Electricity Agency (PEA), 5) Office of The Non – Formal and Informal Education (NFE), 6) Ministry of Interior (MOI), 6) National Statistical Office (NSO)2