EEC panel gives nod for digital push

Economy October 08, 2018 01:00

By The Nation

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The steering committee of the EEC Development Policy last week acknowledged the proposal of the Digital Economy and Society Ministry to develop the digital and communications infrastructure on the Eastern Economic Corridor with a budget of more than Bt17.913 billion.

The committee meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.

Kanit Sangsubhan, secretary-general of the EEC Office of Thailand, said that the meeting also assigned the ministry and related agencies to rush to implement the project as proposed by the ministry.

“The premier said at the meeting that the related parties will have to hasten to develop this project, as it will benefit the people in the zone and could accommodate future investment in the EEC,” Kanit added.

The investment in the project will be made over four years, beginning next year. The project is made up of eight plans and 22 projects.

Among them are eight projects involving the development of viaducts for fibre optic networks worth Bt4.380 billion, with investments from state agencies, and development of the Asean Digital Hub.

Another project is the development of an Advanced Big Data Cloud and Data Centre at a cost of Bt2.040 billion, with investments by state agencies, and the setting up of digital infrastructure for the Internet of Things (IoT), the budget for which is yet to be decided.

Other projects include the creation of the 5G test bed centre, the establishment of a Digital Innovation Industrial Promotion Zone and an IoT Institute worth a combined Bt1.8 billion. The latter was already granted a budget of Bt1.74 billion last year.

Six other projects worth Bt815 million are related to the development of IoT for serving the development of smart cities and the development of the Automatic Postal Distribution Centre worth Bt3.550 billion.

The Digital Economy Ministry informed the meeting that the whole project could save Bt5 billion worth of redundant investments for state agencies. It will also woo global digital companies to set up businesses in the EEC. The project is estimated to benefit 3 million people in the area, which covers the eastern provinces of Chachoengsao, Chon Buri and Rayong.