Digicel, Papua New Guinea Sustainable Development Programme bridge communications gap

The Western Province of Papua New Guinea is looking towards a connected future as the PNG Sustainable Development Programme (PNGSDP) – along with its partner Digicel – implements a telecommunications vision to benefit present and future generations, the company said.

The PNGSDP is a fund that was established as a result of the ecological damage to the Western Province by the OK Tedi Mine, and is used for special projects in the area to meet the development needs of the citizens.

The area has long been neglected, primarily due to the sparse population, however, in 2011 Digicel and PNGSDP worked together to deploy 49 telecommunications towers. Now, with that success to build on, this contract will see Digicel upgrading the towers, expanding coverage, deploying LTE and offering managed services.

The World Bank 2016 World Development Report shows a positive correlation between the increase in Internet penetration and the gross domestic product in developing countries, and in PNG, the entire Western Province will soon have access to reliable 4G phone and Internet service, creating an education knowledge network with app-driven learning, a foundation to deliver remote health solutions using LTE and, of course, increased coverage for existing mobile services.