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Telenor Group’s CEO meets with Thailand’s Prime Minister—reaffirms commitment to Thailand 4.0

(Bangkok, 25 May, 2017) Telenor Group’s President and CEO Sigve Brekke today met with the Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, reaffirming the company’s commitment to support the digital development of the country and the vision of Thailand 4.0. 
“As part of our commitment to providing mobile internet and digital services for all, we acknowledge the government’s high ambitions for digital development and continue to support the vision of Thailand 4.0. We view the establishing of a dedicated Ministry for Digital Economy and Societies as an important step towards realizing the government’s agenda,” said Sigve Brekke, President and CEO of Telenor Group.
This year, Telenor Group marks 17 years of business operations in Thailand. Over the years, the Oslo-based company has made significant contributions to the Thai economy through its strategic business partner, dtac.
According to a recent study by KPMG, dtac’s roll-out of 3G and 4G services in 2011-2015 contributed up to THB 1.3 trillion to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), through socioeconomic benefits from mobile internet services. The same report projected that dtac’s operations in Thailand had generated more than 170,000 direct and indirect jobs. dtac’s mobile network today covers 95% of Thai population, while 4G coverage is up to 78%.
Telenor Group and dtac have committed to supporting the Government’s vision of Thailand 4.0, focusing on digital entrepreneurship, digital inclusion and digital literacy:
·       By actively engaging in the startup ecosystem, through the dtac accelerate program, dtac aims to foster a healthy startup climate and create 30,000 jobs by 2020.
·       By introducing new services aimed at specific segments of the population, dtac supports the ambition to reduce inequalities through digital inclusion. As an example, dtac together with Department of Agricultural Extension had initiated the Smart Farmer program, with the ambition of empowering 100,000 young farmers to digitize their value chain by 2020.
·       By providing mobile connectivity to all segments of society and providing education on the benefits of internet, dtac supports the efforts to reduce digital illiteracy across Thailand. Through its Net Arsa program, dtac aims to groom 1 million digital trainers by 2018.
Furthermore, dtac and Telenor Group has expressed support of public-private partnerships as a means to ensure access to digital infrastructure across the nation while preparing for future spectrum needs to cater for increased data usage. Earlier this year, dtac signed a memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with four ministries to promote the use of digital technology across several segments such as cooperatives, farmers, SMEs and startups.