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Broadband Project Raises Revenue Share Concerns

Industry: ICT Sector, Information Technology (IT)

The Bangladeshi government has invested Tk 1,200 crore in laying optical fiber across 2,600 unions under the Info Sarkar project’s phase-3. The project aims to provide high-speed internet at the union level. The Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) has signed a deal with Summit Communications and Fiber@Home for the maintenance and operation of the broadband infrastructure. Under a public-private partnership (PPP), 90% of the revenue earned from broadband connections will go to private entities, with the government receiving only 10%.

Some government officials and private company executives have expressed surprise at the government’s minimal share of the revenue, considering its significant investment in the project. State Minister for ICT defended the agreement, stating that all regulations related to PPP and public procurement were followed.

Summit Communications and Fiber@Home, which previously won the tender for implementing phase-3, will now be responsible for repairing, maintaining, operating, and upgrading the broadband connections. The network aims to bridge the digital divide and reduce marginal-level disparities. However, the duplication of the network could pose a threat to its effectiveness

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