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Singapore and China to Sign MOU to Enhance Internet Connectivity

Mr Mah Bow Tan, Minister for Communications, and his Chinese counterpart Mr Wu Jichuan, Minister for Information Industry, will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to enhance telecommunications connectivity between ...

Singapore, 26 October 1998 | For Immediate Release

Mr Mah Bow Tan, Minister for Communications, and his Chinese counterpart Mr Wu Jichuan, Minister for Information Industry, will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to enhance telecommunications connectivity between Singapore and China.

This MOU is part of TAS' efforts to enhance Singapore's Internet connectivity within the Asia region. Under this MOU, a 2Mbps link has been established between Singapore and China. This will further enhance existing Internet data exchange, and encourage the sharing of Internet content, facilitate business and even R&D collaboration between the two countries. The areas of co-operation under this MOU are given in Annex 1.

As part of the signing ceremony, both Ministers will witness the fast access of Singapore Chinese web sites from Beijing. The Ministers will be shown some Chinese web sites hosted in Singapore.

This 2Mbps Internet connection is jointly implemented by Singapore's three Internet Access Service Providers (IASPs) - Cyberway, Pacific Internet and SingNet. This enhanced Internet connectivity will further facilitate the current national efforts, and those of the IASPs, to promote Chinese content development in Singapore.

Said Mr Cheah Cheng Poh, General Manager of Cyberway, "The new connection will ensure a smooth flow of electronic commerce data between our two countries. We are sure that Net users, young and old in both countries, will use the link to further explore the rich and diverse cultural heritage of both nations."

Said Mr Tay Soo Nguan, SingNet's Deputy Director for Customer Service, "This 2Mbps link between Singapore and China will certainly enhance Singapore's position as the regional Internet hub. With faster Internet access speed to China, it will improve the service quality to Internet users in Singapore, as well as China."

Mr Nicholas Lee, Chief Executive Officer of Pacific Internet said, "We have been preparing for this over the last few years with our PI Chinese Homepage, our mirroring of Chinese websites and our participation in Chinese Internet-based activities. The high speed link will allow our customers to benefit from the wealth of Chinese content in China, as well as enable China-based Internet users to make contact with our e-commerce vendors and business subscribers in Singapore."

Other benefits of this enhanced connectivity include improved on-line communication between business operations in Singapore and China, such as the industrial parks in China. The mutual exchange of and development of Chinese Internet content development will also be further facilitated.

Said LTC (NS) Foo Jong Ai, TAS' Director for Development, "This is part of an overall APII (Asia Pacific Information Infrastructure) vision to build intra-regional connectivity within the Asia Pacific region, in order to break away from the US-centric architecture of Internet. This MoU with China opens up opportunities to synergise strengths of both parties on the development and hubbing of Chinese and English content. One example could be the translation of popular English content into the Chinese language and hosted in Singapore for easy access using the enhanced Internet connection."

This 2Mbps connection is expected to be scaled up subsequently as content builds up and demand for usage grows.

As part of the programme, Minister Mah will visit the PT EXPO COMM Exhibition in Beijing.

Note to Editor:

1 The PT/EXPO COMM CHINA 98 Exhibition is organised by China National Postal and Telecommunications Appliances Corporation, China International Exhibition Centre and E.J. Krause & Associates, Inc. This is a telecommunications/information technologies show and there will be a total of 640 exhibitors. PT/EXPO COMM runs from the 27-31 October 98 at the China International Exhibition Centre.

Annex 1

Both Singapore and China agree that cooperative activities under the MoU will be conducted in accordance with applicable laws and regulations in each country and shall take the following forms:

a) Enhance connectivity between the NIIs of both Parties by initially establishing a 2Mbps Internet connection between both countries on a cost-sharing basis.

b) Collaborate in the development, promotion and proliferation of Chinese language multimedia content on the Internet.

c) Synergise from the strengths of both Parties in Chinese content development and English content hubbing to establish both countries as mutually supporting centres for content hosting and development.

d) Facilitate the development of electronic commerce infrastructure to increase bilateral trade and investments.

e) Enhance communications and connectivity for the joint venture industrial park developments of both Parties, in accordance with the relevant regulations on telecommunications of both governments, to further attract investments and enhance economic activities in the Parks.

Press Contacts:

Ms Tan Kuan 
Infrastructure Development Department

Ms Dulcie Chan
Corporate Communications Department
Tel: 322 1999

Mr Cheah Cheng Poh
General Manager
Tel: 740 1295

Pacific Internet:
Ms Sant Kaur
Manager (Public Relations)
Mobile: 9816 6389

Seeto Wai Kee
Marketing Communications Manager
Tel: 435 0134
Fax: 535 8191