Pikom: Internet penetration to grow up to 20% this year

(Bernama) – The National Information and Communications Technology Association of Malaysia (Pikom) expects Internet penetration in Malaysia to grow between 10% and 20% this year.

“We have close to 50% Internet penetration in the country currently, and with the ongoing efforts by the industry players and the government, we can see a fair growth this year,” said its president Ang Chin Joo.

He said the government has played a significant role in aiding the Internet penetration to grow so far and will further continue to focus and lift the industry at large.

“Meanwhile, industry players must continue their promotions as well as concentrate in sharing knowledge, experience and expertise to further equip themselves in line with the current development.

“This will lend support to grow the industry. Therefore, we are positive in achieving the target,” he told Bernama after a press conference here today on the Asia-Pacific Regional Internet Conference on Operational Tecnologies (Apricot) 2010, which will be held from Feb 23 to March 5.

He said Apricot 2010, to be hosted by Pikom, will be an international conference and a platform to spur industry players to come together to learn and share.

It is an important event for the industry and it is also in line with the government’s objective to facilitate and promote the growth of information technology in the country, he said.

Ang said with the proliferation of the broadband services available and Internet penetration, Apricot 2010 agenda will definitely support the current needs of Malaysia to enhance the knowledge of local information, communications and technology (ICT) engineers.

The rollout of the high-speed broadband initiative will encourage further the industry at large.

“Currently, Malaysia has about 32% broadband penetration and it is expected to reach about 50% this year. We need to catch up in terms of broadband penetration with an acceptable level of speed and competitive pricing,” Ang said.

Telecommunications provider Telekom Malaysia (TM) is expected to commercially launch the HSBB retail service in four initial areas by the end of the first quarter this year.

On the ICT industry, Ang said the industry is expected to grow about 8% this year amid increased demand and several growth factors.