South Korean Government to Start Combining 51 Individual Telecommunication Network from Government Departments

Jan 24, 2017

More than half of individual telecommunication network from 51 government departments will be combined as ‘national convergence network’ by second half of this year. South Korean Government is going to combine government departments’ entire telecommunication network into one and save $42.8 million (50.0 billion KRW) yearly on telecommunication cost. It is likely that this will cause fierce competitions between three mobile network providers to win contracts from South Korean Government to establish this national network.
Ministry of Government Administration and Home Affairs held a briefing session on ISP (Information Strategy Plan) project on ‘Project for Establishment of National Convergence Network’ at Government Complex-Seoul on the 23rd. At this session, it discussed plans and schedules for this project with other related departments such as Ministry of Science, ICP and Future Planning, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, National Tax Service, Korea Meteorological Administration, and National Election Commission.
National convergence network will combine 51 individual telecommunication networks (backbone network) into one. National Financial Strategy Conference (under deputy prime minister for economic affairs) voted for establishment of national convergence network in last March in order to efficiently operate government departments’ telecommunication network and to reduce telecommunication cost.
Current national telecommunication network is operated based on National Computing & Information Service’s national information telecommunication network called K-NET and departments’ individual telecommunication network. Number of circuits for individual network is 18,366 and it costs about $137 million (160 billion KRW) to operate them annually. Number of circuits and yearly budget for K-NET are 305 and $14.6 million (17.0 billion KRW).

Block diagram of ‘national convergence network’ after  combination <Block diagram of ‘national convergence network’ after combination>

South Korean Government is going to combine K-NET and individual network as national convergence network. South Korean Government is going to accommodate central department’s headquarters, local governments, and front-line governments all together by establishing more than 30 nodes throughout South Korea. It is going to establish ISP during first half of this year and start this project during second half. First of all it is going to combine telecommunication network from 29 departments. Afterwards it is going to combine networks from 12 of remaining departments in 2018 to networks from 29 departments and finish the process by combining networks from remaining 10 departments to national convergence network.
When national convergence network is established, South Korean Government can save about $42.9 million (50.0 billion KRW) on telecommunication fee annually. Because about 70% of current individual telecommunication network is composed of toll circuits, it acts as a cause of rise in telecommunication fee. On the other hand, national convergence network will be operated based on city telecommunication circuits. This network can make intellectualization of security control and scientification of management of impediments possible. South Korean Government is going to carry out unified security policies through network management center.
“Not only national convergence network project will reduce budget but it will also contribute in stabilizing electronic government services and government organizations’ network.” said Vice-Minister Kim Seong-ryeol of Ministry of Government Administration and Home Affairs who is the leader for the group that is pushing for establishment of national convergence network. “This network also needs to be preceded from a perspective on introduction of public organizations’ new technologies according to Industry 4.0.”
It is likely that competitions between mobile network providers will become fiercer as they look to secure contracts from South Korean Government. Currently KT, LG Uplus and SK Broadband provide national telecommunication network. Although KT has the most number of circuits, sales for KT and LG Uplus are similar.
Ministry of Government Administration and Home Affairs is going to prepare plans to form telecommunication companies that will be in charge of ISP project. It is going to decide on whether or not it will have single company to operate all of major telecommunication network and back-up telecommunication networks or have two companies to share the work load.
Staff Reporter Lee, Hojun |

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