PLDT inks $1 million grant agreement with USTDA

Richmond Mercurio - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — PLDT Inc. has signed a $1-million grant agreement with the US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) to accelerate the transformation of its digital transport network through a new training program.

The training program is expected to boost PLDT’s transport network transformation project as it supports the training, skills upgrade, and capacity building of the company’s technical and managerial staff implementing the project.

PLDT said its customers could look forward to faster seamless delivery of customized digital experiences, with the company being able to manage traffic congestion, minimize network outages, and launch new digital services faster.

“This investment will equip our people with the skills and knowledge needed to transform PLDT as an organization as we march toward the 5G-powered future. The future of this company depends a lot on how we transform, not only our network, but also our people,” PLDT chairman and chief executive officer Manuel V. Pangilinan said

Jointly developed by US technology company Cisco and PLDT, the courses that will be delivered under the training grant are designed to support PLDT’s transformation and digitization initiatives.

The training program will be conducted by Cisco, PLDT’s partner in its transport network transformation program launched last year.

Under the program, PLDT and Cisco are transforming the telco’s IP transport infrastructure into a 5G-ready, fully automated, software-defined IP transport network by deploying cutting-edge technology using PLDT’s existing fiber network.

“USTDA is committed to supporting the development of quality information and communications infrastructure and broadband capabilities in the Philippines. Our support for this training program will build stronger ties between the US and Philippine telecommunications sectors,” USTDA acting director Thomas Hardy said.

“Our agency’s mission is to help connect our overseas partners with US technologies and US companies. This is an exciting chance to help support these partnerships,” USTDA regional manager for Asia Brandon Megorden added.

PLDT’s fiber network footprint of over 307,000 kilometers is currently the country’s most extensive fiber infrastructure.

With four cable landing stations linking the country to major international gateways worldwide, PLDT’s fiber network also supports the company’s array of digital services for both its fixed and wireless customers.

Armed with both fixed and wireless infrastructure, PLDT said it is best positioned to deploy 5G in the country.

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