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Batanes set to open first
Internet station Saturday

Posted: 2:29 AM (Manila Time) | Feb. 09, 2002
By Juliet Cataluña
Inquirer News Service

BASCO, Batanes – After years of isolation from cyberspace, this northernmost province will be linked to the rest of the country and the world via the Internet.

The Ivatan Foundation for Development Inc. (IFDCI) will launch Saturday the province's first Internet station called "Batanesconnect".

The station is linked to the rest of the world via satellite with full Internet access.

Batanesconnect is a joint project of the IFDCI and the Ph. Domain Foundation, a Manila-based group that provides free Internet bandwidth. Telsat Inc. provides the satellite service.

Aside from the station, the foundation will also connect government offices here to the Internet using 15 remote sites that use wireless technology.

Demetrius Paul Narag, IFDCI executive director, said after the telephone link, the Internet is the second breakthrough introduced by IFDCI to Batanes.

Batanes Representative Florencio Abad, who is expected to attend the launching rites, hailed the management and the IFDCI board of directors for working hard to realize the project.

The provincial government and Abad's office extended the financial support for the project.

Provincial governor Vicente Gato and Abad said the Internet would hasten implementation of projects and programs of both the government and the private sector through access to the latest in communications technology.

Ferdinand Elica, a nongovernmental organization official, said the launching of Internet station was a giant step toward the development of Batanes by making it more attractive to investors.

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