An In-Depth Study of Broadband Infrastructure in the ASEAN Region

An In-Depth Study of Broadband Infrastructure in the ASEAN Region

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Between late 2012 and mid‐2013, Terabit Consulting performed a detailed analysis of the broadband infrastructure in the nine largest member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN): Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Viet Nam. Terabit Consulting’s analysis also included trans‐border broadband projects extending into contiguous regions such as Yunnan Province, China.

The analysis revealed that, although extensive investment has been made in fibre and other broadband infrastructure, both domestically and internationally, there is a wide chasm between markets, with a clear “broadband divide” demonstrated when richer markets are compared with poorer ones, when major metropolitan areas are compared with smaller cities and rural areas, and when coastal markets are compared with inland ones.

The analysis also shows that international connectivity and the pricing of international bandwidth varies greatly among the nine subject ASEAN countries, and that even in the markets with lower costs, bandwidth is still significantly more expensive than in Europe and North America. A limited number of international bandwidth hubs have emerged to serve the Southeast Asian region, most notably Singapore and Hong Kong, China, offering the region’s lowest international bandwidth prices and greatest overall international capacity. Much of the region’s international fibre infrastructure has developed in a hub‐and‐spoke configuration around these two hubs, although telecommunications carriers and other investors of means have constructed their own direct interregional fibre infrastructure wherever possible.


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