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USTDA supports enhanced internet access in the Philippines

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Arlington, VA – TODAY, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency awarded a grant to Filipino company Responsible Internet Sustainability Effort, Inc. (RISE) for a feasibility study that will help internet service providers in the Philippines to strengthen the delivery of high-quality and resilient internet services, especially in underserved communities. Specifically, the study will advance RISE’s efforts to expand carrier-neutral internet exchange infrastructure through its GetaFIX business unit. RISE selected California-based Connectivity Capital LLC to conduct the study.

USTDA and RISE signed their grant agreement at the 6th Indo-Pacific Business Forum, where Philippine President Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos Jr. provided keynote remarks.

“USTDA partners with companies like RISE to improve access to affordable and reliable internet connectivity for underserved communities in the Indo-Pacific. Planning the deployment of innovative technology is part of our strategy to promote inclusive economic growth,” said Enoh T. Ebong, USTDA’s Director. “USTDA is pleased to launch this project at the Indo-Pacific Business Forum. It is just one demonstration of our unwavering commitment to promote trade, investment, and economic cooperation with the Philippines.”

The expansion of GetaFIX internet exchanges will allow data to travel shorter distances to reach users, enhancing both speed and reliability for improved user experience and increased connectivity between the Philippines’ internet service providers. The project will also drive demand for new data centers, which house internet exchange infrastructure. This will create new business opportunities for U.S. companies to partner with the Philippines on its digital transition.

“We’re thrilled and honored that USTDA would choose to support GetaFIX, its members and partners in expanding to more communities,” said Rhett Jones, Founder and CEO of RISE and Founder of GetaFIX. “Having grown to the Philippines’ largest internet exchange already, GetaFIX is ready to make an even bigger impact and keep living our motto ‘when we share everyone wins.’”

“The U.S. government is committed to supporting the Philippine government on its digital development journey,” said U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines MaryKay L. Carlson. “This grant from USTDA will support efforts to bring affordable connectivity to remote communities, enabling access to the digital economy for every Filipino.”

USTDA’s study advances the goals of Biden-Harris Administration priorities such as the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment, the Digital Connectivity and Cybersecurity Partnership, and the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity Project Preparation Facility.|

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