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Smart cities within reach, new frequency band proposed

Khann Chanvirak / Khmer Times Share:
Aun Pornmoniroth chairs a meeting to review and discuss the proposal to establish a new digital frequency band. AKP

The Cambodian government plans to invest in a new national digital television platform to contribute to the country’s transformation to a digital economy.

The government will hand over the 700 Mhz frequency band to the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications (MPTC) to help develop 5G services in the Kingdom.

Director-general of the General Department of Information and Broadcasting of the Ministry Information Phos Sovann told Khmer Times yesterday that the policy-making committee for providing analogue-to-digital broadcasts has documented the advantages and disadvantages in a report sent to the head of government to decide on one of three options.

“Regarding the new digital TV frequency management and investment mechanism, the meeting discussed and compared three different mechanism options, including the private sector management and investment mechanism, the public-private partnership mechanism and the mechanism managed and invested entirely by the state,” he said.

Sovann said that since Cambodia has a free market economy, open to private sector participation, the commission has weighed in on the effectiveness of a private sector monopoly, state monopoly or cooperation.

MPTC secretary of state Meas Po told Khmer Times yesterday that the chairman of the Economic and Financial Policy Committee of the Ministry of Finance discussed the options internally with experts from the Ministry of Information, the MPTC among others, about a local company proposed for the establishment of a digital television frequency band.

“The company has already submitted a formal proposal, but more technical plans are needed. Therefore, we have not made a decision yet, because it requires the company to provide details before we can consider whether the government should cooperate with private companies or allow the company to work exclusively,” he said.

Po added that the MPTC is now developing a policy on the digital government and digital economy for the current digital society, which is now almost 100 percent drafted.

“We used to call it e-government, but now we move into another context of the digital government, meaning that public works and the provision of public services by the government will use digital as a basis,” he said.

According to the circular signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen on April 20, the establishment of a joint working group on the national digital television frequency band is to prepare an investment plan for the national digital television programme by studying in detail the costs for investment for the first three years (2021-2023) and prepare expenditure proposals for investment in various supporting infrastructure.

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