During his budget presentation on Monday, Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan reported that US$37.6 million, has been allocated to implement the first phase of the Smart Guyana Programme, a national broadband initiative to expand the e-Government network.
Minister Jordan said that the Government will upgrade the existing LTE network (Long Term Evolution is the next stage in mobile network development and provides users with much faster data speeds than 3G). Efforts will also be made to rehabilitate and construct data centres, provide capacity building, outfit smart classrooms and e-Libraries, launch e-Health solutions for remote health care services, and increase our closed-circuit television capacities towards a Safe City solution.
$2.3B has been allocated to commence work on this initiative, in 2018. In addition, a further US$17 million has been earmarked to ensure that vulnerable groups and far-flung hinterland communities, which might otherwise be excluded, are provided with the necessary infrastructure, hardware and software that will enable access to high-quality ICT, training and e-service.
Implementation of this project is anticipated to commence in 2018 and, on completion, will see over 89,000 residents, in approximately 170 communities, having access to over 200 eGovernment ICT hubs.