Google balloon to see light again | Daily News

Google balloon to see light again

The Google Loon project has been renegotiated and will be re-launched in Sri Lanka.

Minister of Telecommunication, Digital Infrastructure and Foreign Employment, Harin Fernando said he had visited the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in Geneva and obtained an approval to relaunch the Google balloon project in Sri Lanka in the near future.

Fernando addressing the Infotel ICT launch ceremony in Colombo on Tuesday said this will be a good opportunity to showcase that the country will have islandwide 4G connectivity which will also help improving speed and connectivity making digitalization more meaningful. “Once the Google balloon project succeeds there will not be any white spaces in connection with 4G connectivity,” he said.

The minister said the government has made strides in the digitalization process with over 860 government offices getting fiber optic connectivity and they intend to move up to 3,600 fiber optic connections shortly. Sri Lanka’s e-service is voted as the 36th best in the world by the UN.

It was however, the role of the private sector to take the digitalization process forward and champion the cause, Minister Fernando said.

“Now that we are in our last stride we have got our priorities right. I have spoken to the President, Finance Minister and Foreign Minister and in the next two years you can see the positive changes. We have restructured the entire ICTA, got a new set of board members and a new chairman. We have brought down our huge vision to a vision that we could actually achieve,” he said.

The minister also said that he regretted the inability to be successful in some of the ambitious initiatives such as getting the online payment system on track. “This is what happens in Sri Lanka - if you want to make a change or do something people with vested interests do not allow you to do it. We have done an Electronics Act amendment in Parliament. Now we have digital signatures and digital contracts can be signed and biometrics used. The law is passed and I have done my part in Parliament.”

Fernando added that the Infotel expo has been doing a yeoman service in the last few years to nourish the ITC sector in Sri Lanka. 



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