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“Fiber will hasten the growth of the outsourcing industry here and bolster the development of the province’s already flourishing tourism business,” he added.
Consisting of 328 kilometers of inland and submarine fiber optic cables running from Cebu through Bohol to Cagayan De Oro, PLDT’s DFON in Bohol was inaugurated in ceremonies during the celebration on Tuesday of Bohol Day in the provincial capital of Tagbilaran City.
Outsourcing and tourism are two of the three pillars of the economic development program of the provincial government. The third pillar is agro-industry.
With an initial transmission capacity of up to 40 Gbps, PLDT’s new fiber facility is expected to strengthen the efforts of the provincial government headed by Gov. Edgar Chatto to attract more outsourcing companies to set up shop in Bohol.
In 2012, the provincial capital city Tagbilaran was identified as a “Next Wave City” for the ICT-BPO industry by the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP).
Home to several major universities such as Holy Name University and the University of Bohol, Tagbilaran has a large population of college graduates that can be recruited by BPO companies.
“Fiber will now help turn the potential of the outsourcing industry to generate high-income employment in Bohol into reality. BPO’s depend on high-speed Internet as well as high-bandwidth private connectivity and fiber is a key enabler of these services,” said PLDT EVP and Head of Enterprise and International and Carrier Business Eric R. Alberto.
Alberto added that PLDT’s DFON will also help raise Bohol’s tourism industry to the next level. The province has been developing its tourism industry along the lines of eco-tourism, historical-cultural and adventure tourism. In 2013, more than 380,000 tourists visited Bohol.
The industry was, however, shaken by the major tremor that hit the island last year. Tourist traffic has been steadily recovering since then and the launch of PLDT’s DFON is expected to give it a further push.
With its fiber network on the island, PLDT can now deliver high-speed internet through direct fiber links to establishments in tourist centers like Panglao Island. It can also provide high-speed wireless broadband services through TD-LTE facilities that are powered by fiber links.
“High-speed internet will enable enterprises engaged in tourism to run their operations more efficiently and effectively. At the same time, this will help these enterprises offer better value to their customers, who have come to expect easy access to the internet as part of an enjoyable vacation experience,” Alberto added.
The new fiber network will also help provide the needed ICT support for the new international airport that will be built in Panglao.
Moreover, other industries such as education, wholesale and retail, and local government offices can now enjoy better access to PLDT’s more advanced data services like managed voice services such as managed PABX and UcaaS, PLDT Cloud products such as web presence, web point of sale (POS) solutions, video monitoring, and mobility solutions.
“PLDT is partnering with Bohol’s local government to better serve the various industries that the region is currently developing,” said PLDT AVP and Head of Cebu-Bohol Customer Service Operations Zone Elmer Lintag.
PLDT has the most expansive and most resilient fiber optic network in the country totaling more than 85,000 kilometers of fiber architecture as of end-March 2014, with the DFON alone capable of carrying up to 5.13 TBPS of data. The Bohol fiber link project bolsters the PLDT’s network resiliency in the Visayas-Mindanao loop making it less susceptible to outages from fiber cuts caused by natural disasters like earthquakes or heavy storms.
“We will continue to expand our internet infrastructure to support the development efforts of different parts of the country. This will spread more equitably the benefits of the country's economic growth," Nazareno said.
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