THE DEPARTMENT of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) on Wednesday said that it aims to build enough cell towers to serve the needs of 89 million internet users by 2025 after a senator noted the need to improve efficiency by achieving the ideal ratio.  

During the interpellation of the department’s proposed 2022 budget, Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon and DICT representatives calculated that 178,000 cell towers are needed nationwide to reach goals set by the National Telecommunications Commission.  

The DICT said there are currently 25,213 government-funded cell towers nationwide, which cater to roughly 3,500 users per site when the ideal is 500.  

“The ideal ratio is 500 users per cell site if it is simultaneously used,” said Senator Ronald M. dela Rosa, who was speaking for the DICT officials during Wednesday’s plenary session.   

He noted, however, that the number provided was only for the large towers and does not include the estimated 127,000 smaller towers under DICT.  

DICT assured that the goal in the next four years is achievable given improved conditions and policies for infrastructure rollout. — Alyssa Nicole O. Tan