Julaihi, flanked by Liwan and Alice, speaks to reporters at the press conference

KUCHING, Feb 25, 2022 - Collaboration among telecommunications stakeholders is very important in ensuring that the state would achieve full coverage by 2025, said Utility and Telecommunications Minister Datuk Julaihi Narawi.

He said towards this end, an estimated total of 7,000 telco towers would have to be built across the state.


“This is a big challenge due to the state’s wide area and difficult terrains.


“Despite these challenges, we hope to build those towers that are needed for us to achieve the targeted full coverage.


“That is why we hold this engagement session with the agencies involved in telecommunications, as well as the service providers in Sarawak. We want to identify the issues and challenges in our efforts to provide total coverage, and the problems faced by service providers throughout the state,” he said in a press conference held after attending a one-day engagement session with telecommunications stakeholders here today.


Julaihi said building the 7,000 towers would also involve the collaboration between the Sarawak government and the federal government through the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).


He said the estimated total would include the 300 towers already built by Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA), and another 300 to be constructed by Sarawak Digital Economy Corporation (SDEC).

“Out of the completed 300 towers, 14 have been fitted with the necessary equipment, which means they can be used. The remaining ones are in the progress of being fitted.


“I was told by SDEC that they had all the necessary equipment for 600 towers.


“SDEC is ready to install all the equipment on the completed towers as well as those going to be completed soon,” he said.

On a related note, Julaihi said he encouraged service providers to invest in Sarawak.


“We know they can make a profit by giving services in the urban areas, but we encourage them to also invest in the rural areas.


“In the long run, they will also reap the benefits. It is good for both service providers and Sarawakians as a whole. It is a win-win situation,” he said.

The engagement session was divided into two. In the morning, the ministry team met with the representatives of six agencies, namely MCMC, SMA, SDEC, Sarawak Energy Bhd (SEB), Sacofa and Sains; in the afternoon, they had a discussion with the service providers namely Telekom, Celcom, Maxis, Digi and U Mobile.


Also present were Assistant Minister for Utility and Telecommunications I Datuk Liwan Lagang and the ministry’s permanent secretary Dato Alice Jawan Empaling.

Source: The Borneo Post