Former prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today said that the government-owned Single Wholesale Network (SWN) model has the advantage of implementing the 5G network quickly, at a lower cost and better quality.
In a statement, the Pagoh MP said that the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) regulated SWN model would provide fair and equal access to all telcos, thereby promoting service-focused competition to its customers.
He said that should the government decides to change the SWN model to a different one now, it would result in reputational risks to the government, which include loss of investor confidence, serious financial and legal implications, loss of economic generation amounting to RM122 billion by 2030, loss of opportunity cost and the loss of up to 15,000 jobs related to the development of the 5G network.
“I hope the government will consider this matter in determining the implementation model that is most suitable for the people as a whole. This includes aspects of inclusiveness and people’s ability to enjoy 5G services at a low cost.
“In addition, I would also like to remind people that this supply-based model is also important to ensure that 5G services can be enjoyed by residents living in rural areas.
“The fact is that even now, 4G services are not enjoyed by most rural residents, and the case of Veveonah Mosibin in June 2020 is a close example to our hearts. This is because these areas are not profitable for telcos,” he said.
Muhyiddin added that the Government had to provide additional funds of RM28 billion from public and private money under the National Digital Network (Jendela) initiative to connect services to rural communities, where telcos — who are typically profit-driven — failed to provide coverage.
“The SWN model adopted by Digital Nasional Berhad (DNB), together with its other benefits, is clearly beneficial to all parties. Above all, this model will ensure the inclusion of 5G network coverage as well as cheap prices for the service for everyone, regardless of individual or business.
“I hope this matter is not politicised by any party in their efforts for their own personal gain,” he said.
At the same time, Muhyiddin welcomed the decision of Telekom Malaysia Berhad (TM), which has signed a trial agreement with DNB.
“This will see their customers receive 5G network services in the near future. This clearly proves that the model adopted by DNB and their management was successful in delivering 5G services based on the timeline,” he said. — Malay Mail
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