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Malaysia's Communications Minister announced that the National Digital Network (JENDELA) program, which aims to upgrade the country's broadband infrastructure, is progressing well and is expected to be completed by the end of next year.

The minister reported that out of the 3,884 new telecoms towers planned, 2,395 have already been built and activated, with 39,983 transmitter stations upgraded out of a planned 40,214.

Additionally, 3.32 million premises out of 4.19 million have been equipped with fiber optic connectivity. The JENDELA initiative, with a budget of MYR 21 billion (USD 4.4 billion), was launched in 2020 as part of the 12th Malaysia Plan (2021-2025) to achieve 100% broadband connectivity in populated areas by 2025 and expand 5G usage.

The single wholesale 5G network operator, Digital Nasional Bhd (DNB), has covered over 80% of populated areas as of December 31, paving the way for the introduction of a second 5G operator later this year.

During a Q&A session in Dewan Rakyat, the minister stated that all JENDELA initiatives are expected to be completed and operational by the end of 2025. Furthermore, he mentioned that 169 towers in Sarawak were reactivated between January 1 and March 22, and a government budget was allocated to activate 600 towers in the region.

Telcos are gearing up to manage a total of 297 towers, with ongoing activities such as construction, relocation, and addressing location challenges. Currently, 44 towers are under construction, indicating active expansion efforts to meet growing network demands. Additionally, 59 towers are in the process of being relocated, reflecting initiatives to optimize network coverage and infrastructure placement for improved service quality and efficiency. However, 31 towers are encountering location issues, presenting challenges that require resolution to ensure seamless operation and network reliability.

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