January 30, 2020
All local level government bodies in Nepal still don’t have access to Internet services. According to data released by the Nepal Telecommunications Authority, till now, there’s about 71 percent Internet penetration in Nepal. Broadband Policy 2071 states that by the year 2020, the aim is for access to broadband over wireless or wired medium at all the local levels.
According to the policy brought with the aim of making all government offices in Nepal paperless, the Telecommunications Authority of Nepal is undertaking the work. According to the policy, broadband internet will be provided to every local level ward office, community school, health post in Nepal.
NTA has already negotiated with different companies in 18 separate projects in the year 2073 and 2074 to provide internet access to various governmental bodies in every local state. The authority has been working with the objective of delivering broadband internet at all local levels by reaching 100 percent internet penetration by the end of the current fiscal year.
According to the Nepal Telecommunications Authority, out of the 18 projects, 10 projects have been completed. According to Min Prasad Aryal, Nepal Telecom has completed one project, Subisu has completed 3 projects,2 projects by Mercantile Communications, 2 projects by Worldlink Communication,1 by each Vianet and TechMinds Network Pvt. Ltd.
So far, the Internet connection has been completed 8896 sites in different districts under the 10 various projects. Aryal informed that the project demands internet access at 16,601 sites within the country.
Although the designated10 projects have been completed at a quick pace, the work of 5 projects has been slow to proceed. Mercantile Communication, which received the responsibility of delivering the Internet to Achham, Bajura, and Bajhang in 2017, said that only 63 percent of the work was completed.
Likewise, TechMinds, which has the responsibility of connecting the broadband internet to the local level of 5 different districts of the Province 1, has also completed 31 percent of work.
Similarly, Worldlink Communications, which has the responsibility of expanding the broadband internet at the local level in 5 different districts of Province 4, has also taken the initiative at a slow pace. Likewise, TechMinds, that has been given the responsibility of expanding the broadband Internet in 4 districts of the Province 4 and 5 districts of the Province 1, has also shown sluggishness in the work.
Nepal Telecommunication Authority has not yet started the work of 3 projects. The process of expanding broadband internet in 4 districts of Province3 and 5, 4 districts of Province 5 and the other 5 districts have not yet been started.
The operator to extend the service has not been selected, with only 5 months remaining until the end of the current financial year.
The spokesperson of the NTA, Min Prasad Aryal, said that the project lead will be selected soon to complete the work in a timely manner.
According to him, NEA is aiming to bring together the remaining 3 projects while other projects are underway. The Authority has agreed to provide funds for the projects under the Rural Telecommunication Development Fund.