MANILA — The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) on Tuesday assured that it will come out with a solution to increase the Internet speed in the country.
Senator Paolo Benigno Aquino IV said NTC commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba told the Senate public hearing on the slow and expensive Internet connection in the country that NTC is coming out with a memorandum circular to address the problem.
”Currently, the NTC has no power to dictate the prices but it has power to set a minimum standards. They are coming up with the memo circular on the matter,” Aquino said in a media interview after the hearing.
The NTC has come up with suggestions to address slow Internet speed in the country including possible amendment of Republic Act 7925, or the “Public Telecommunications Policy Act of 1995”.
”The suggestion is to make Internet service as one of the basic services and not value-added service,” Aquino said.
Aquino said government has the power to control the prices of the basic services.
According to Senate Resolution 620, the slow and expensive Internet connection has been adversely affecting ease of doing business in the Philippines.
The Filipino consumers spend around Php1,000 per month for Internet services with speed up to two megabits per second (Mbps) only.
”Comparing the prices of Internet services among Southeast Asian countries, the cost to Filipino consumers is more expensive than Internet costs in Singapore and Thailand, which have the fastest Internet connections globally,” Aquino said in his resolution.
According to the “ASEAN Average Internet Speed Index 2014” report, the Philippines is at the bottom of the list of Association of Southeast Asian Nation (ASEAN) countries with 3.6 Mbps, way below the ASEAN average of 12.4 Mbps.