Japan on late on Monday has agreed to help the Philippines boost its information technology cooperation to better equip Manila in dealing with disasters and national calamities.
Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications Yoshitaka Shindo said in a press conference that the technology “can save many lives during emergencies.”
He noted how the Philippines is constantly being hit by typhoons and natural calamities.
“By the time when the next typhoon comes in, which will be around July, we are ready to embark on a working level activity in order to materialize on this objective.”
The agreement between the Japanese government and the Philippines through the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) will allow the use of the Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting following Manila’s adoption of Tokyo’s Integrated Services Digital Broadcast-Terrestrial (ISDB-T) standard.
The ISDB-T technology is an early warning broadcasting system that can activate a television set when it is turned off. When in an emergency, the TV will “allow viewers to receive emergency disaster-related information via their television screen.”
Japan’s contribution to the Philippines’ development of ICT is believed to give solution for social problems in the various fields that include disaster management, education, health and national reconcilition in the Philippines.
” . . . and hope it may also lead to further business opportunities for Japanese companies.”
The development of information communication technology (ICT) “is a major factor in the promotion and
advancement of commerce as well as the social and economic development of each country.”
Japan will also help the Philippines address the “accelerated evolution of digital convergence” in a timely and effective manner.
The ministry and the DOST “will encourage the development of cooperation and exchanges of experiences and best practices in the field of ICT between business, research and development, educational institutions, government policy and regulatory agencies and other organizations.”
These will include the development of a memorandum of cooperation for the implementation of Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting between Tokyo and Manila, the enhancement of ICT in disaster risk reduction and management program and activities and the formulation and implementation of ICT policies in the field of cyber and information securities “to protect cyber security and information networks.”
There will also be cooperation and exchanges in promoting and enhancing cyber security strategies and programs, as well as counteracting illegal cyber activities, including the protection of vulnerable groups, especially children.
The two countries will also promote a safe, secure and trusted online environment for the provision of “effective, efficient and equitable public services.”
They then agreed on the importance of reinforcement of cooperation in the ICT fields such as utilization of big and open data, cloud and geospatial information, 4G mobile telecommunication system, optic fiber and communication satellite, next generation methods such as security and energy consumption, intelligent transport system, e-Government and cultural relationships through broadcasting contents.
But even with the advancement of these technologies, the ministry and the DOST
agreed to develop and promote green growth such as the reduction of carbon footprint in the ICT industry and use of ICT to mitigate effects of climate change.
The Philippines has suffered through the worst typhoons in the past years, including Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) on November 8 last year, which flattened out communities in eastern Visayas.
Typhoon Pablo (international name: Bopha) in December 2012 devastated Davao Oriental and Compostela Valley while Tropical Storm Ondoy and Pepeng in 2009 damaged Metro Manila.
Typhoon Sendong (international name: Washi) in 2011 was considered to be the deadliest storm to hit Northern Mindanao, the Visayas and Palawan in the last 12 years. BERNICE CAMILLE V. BAUZON