The Asia-Pacific Remote Broadband Internet Satellite Project aims to help make broadband internet connections more widely available to countries in the region, where more than two billion people do not have reliable internet access due to inadequate infrastructure, geographical challenges, and the high cost of services.
AFP/File
ADB launches $50 million financing for broadband in remote islands
Catherine Talavera (The Philippine Star) - December 3, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has signed its first satellite financing agreement worth $50 million that will bring affordable broadband to countries such as the Philippines and Indonesia.

In a statement, ADB said it signed the agreement with Kacific Broadband Satellites International Ltd. (Kacific) to provide affordable satellite-based, high-speed broadband internet connections to countries in Asia and the Pacific, especially in remote areas of small island nations in the Pacific and larger island nations like Indonesia and the Philippines.

The Asia-Pacific Remote Broadband Internet Satellite Project aims to help make broadband internet connections more widely available to countries in the region, where more than two billion people do not have reliable internet access due to inadequate infrastructure, geographical challenges, and the high cost of services.

ADB earlier released the draft proposal for the project in July, which entails the construction, launch, and operation of a shared, geostationary earth orbit, high-throughput satellite called Kacific-1 featuring Ka-band technology, which will be dedicated to low cost, high-speed, easily accessible broadband internet in Asia and the Pacific.

“Better access to reliable, high-speed internet can help improve education services, expand access to information, attract investments, reduce rural–urban development gaps, enhance trade and connectivity, and stimulate local economies,” said ADB director general for private sector operations Michael Barrow.

“It will also help improve communication, especially during emergencies and times of disaster when terrestrial networks might be damaged,” Barrow added.

Kacific founder and CEO Christian Patouraux said ADB’s role was key in getting this transaction closed.

“ADB’s involvement has helped secure the necessary financing for this highly developmental project. The benefits of connectivity are life-changing – from increased tourism, access to information, financial services, to health care and education for many remote communities in the region.

The ADB said the project will support the construction, launch and operation of a shared geostationary earth orbit, high-throughput satellite.

It added that Kacific-1 is scheduled to be launched by SpaceX in December 2019 and will be operational in early 2020.

Financing for the project comprises loans from ADB and the Leading Asia’s Private Infrastructure Fund (LEAP), which is administered by ADB.

Established in March 2016 with support from the Japan International Cooperation Agency, LEAP is one of ADB’s cofinancing vehicles dedicated to private sector infrastructure in Asia and the Pacific.

ADB will be working with GuarantCo, a Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG) company, to guarantee additional private cofinancing for the project.

GuarantCo provides credit solutions for infrastructure development in lower income countries in Africa and Asia and is funded by the governments of the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Australia and Sweden through the PIDG Trust and the Netherlands through FMO, the Dutch Development Bank and the PIDG Trust.

PIDG is a development and finance organization delivering pioneering infrastructure in the poorest and most fragile countries.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. In 2018, it made commitments of new loans and grants amounting to $21.6 billion. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members, 49 of which are from the Asia Pacific region.

AFFORDABLE BROADBAND INTERNET CONNECTIONS REMOTE BROADBAND INTERNET SATELLITE PROJECT
Philstar
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

SIGN IN
or sign in with