KUCHING: Xiddig Cellular Communications Bhd’s (Xiddig) Malaysia International Internet Gateway (EM-IIG) project aims to provide new job opportunities in Sarawak and consequently up the state’s internet speed to satisfy local demand.
According to Xiddig Sarawak chairman Datuk Justin Jinggut at a briefing for local contractors on the fibre optic cable installation in Sarawak, this project will improve internet speed to make it 98 per cent faster than what is currently available here.
Xiddig is a telecommunications company which will install the fibre optic cable line, with a capacity of 150 terabytes (TB), with the inland station to be in Bintulu.
“This project is in line with the state government of Sarawak which has repeatedly announced their concerns on the internet development in Sarawak such as the access to internet, high speed internet and cheap internet access. Xiddig Sarawak will complement the state government on these (issues),” Jinggut remarked.
“Today we are doing the briefing for all Sarawak contractors for cable laying. We want to have the local Sarawakians participate in this project. Hope they will participate and work together with us to make sure this project is successful for the benefit of the community.”
Xiddig executive chairman Datuk Seri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahim also stressed on the need for the state’s support, especially from the government agencies’ departments.
Private investment amounts to about US$1.3 billion to put the EM-IIG infrastructure in place, both for the high speed bandwith, as well as the 5G technology, making it ready by 2020 or 2021. For the Sarawak land cable portion, the project amounts to RM960 million.
“What we are trying to do now is we want Sarawak to standalone instead of sharing from West Malaysia. Now your cable is coming all the way from Mersing, from Kuantan where if there’s a breakdown there, then there’s no internet service at all here,” Abdul Rashid said.
Xiddig managing director Musa A Rahman highlighted that one of the reasons why they are doing this is also to distribute enough works to the local contractors which will also enhance their knowledge and in future, they can also support Xiddig on the maintenenance as well.
“This technology is from Alcatel Submarine Network. This cable will be laid from Hong Kong, directly to Malaysian waters, both East and West Malaysia,” Musa said.
“There will be a direct cable linking into Sarawak itself. This is the first 150 TB fastest cable which will be implemented in Malaysia. Once its on land, most of the households will be able to subscribe for one gigabyte per second (Gbps) at a very affordable price.”
Abdul Rashid also revealed another exciting news which is that they are going to put a Tier 4 data centre in Sarawak, the first in the region, which will benefit business people who are in West Malaysia now as they can then migrate over to Sarawak.
“Also, we have addressed that Microsoft will be the anchor tenant in Bintulu as a Tier 4 data centre. They are ready to come in and collaborate with us.”
Musa also highlighted that one of the major reasons for putting up a Tier 4 data centre in Sarawak is also to introduce the MSC status, if it is recognisable by the state government.
“That will actually lure back all those entrepreneurs who actually went to West Malaysia, to come back and do their business here. That will actually complement in creating more jobs for the locals and more foreign investment into this region The other reason for implementing a Tier 4 data centre is to lure customers from countries like Philippines, Hong Kong, China, Japan to host their servers in Malaysia, especially in Sarawak where it is out of the seismic region.”