Globe to add 100 3G, WiMax sites in Mindanao

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/29 July) — Telecommunications giant Globe Telecom will be adding 100 sites for its 3G and Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access (WiMax) service in Mindanao.

Norma Z. Ribo, Globe Telecom South Mindanao regional head, said half of the planned sites will be for Southwestern Mindanao.

Globe announced its plan at the start of the month-long business activity celebration of USWAG-Sarangani early this week. (USWAG is short for United Towards, Strong, Wealthy and Globally Competitive. It is also the vernacular for “prosper.” The event is now on its sixth year.)

“We have big plans for SOCSKSARGEN (South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani, General Santos City). We are right now preparing for another roll-out of our broadband facilities,” Ribo said in a statement dispatched by the Provincial Information Office.

Ribo introduced WiMax, Globe’s latest broadband technology in 4G signal that is reportedly the first in the country, during the USWAG event.

Globe claimed that at the end of 2009, it already had 3,000 3G and 900 WiMax sites all over the country, aside from the 60,000 regular cellular sites.

Upgrades for the network will be done by placing antennas on existing towers. The cost of building stand-alone physical structures for 3G or WiMax will be more than the cost of the electronics to be placed, according to Gil B. Genio, Globe’s head for business and carrier services and chief executive officer of Globe’s Innove Communications.

Sarangani Gov. Miguel Rene Dominguez said Globe’s participation in the USWAG celebration showcases public-private partnership, which President Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III rolled out in his first State of the Nation Address.

Globe has been assisting four of the province’s micro-enterprises that have shown remarkable growth in the last few months.

“Development should start in the community like Ihan,” said Jeffrey O. Tarayao, Globe corporate social responsibility head.

Sitio Ihan Lumad Association (SILA), one of the four communities assisted by Globe, now produces handcrafted basketry, plates, mats, and picture frames from bamboo, abaca, nito and rattan.

SILA members are known to have attacked Globe facilities in the past.

“It is the private sector that builds the economy. We are just providing opportunities where investments will thrive and for our people to improve their way of living,” Dominguez said.

This year’s USWAG Sarangani event carries the theme “Tagumpay Mula sa Kahirapan.” (MindaNews)