Thai government announces new cloud data centre
Thu 4 May 2017
The government of Thailand has announced that it will begin construction of a cloud data center early next year. The new facility is part of the government’s five-year strategic plan, passed in April, to reduce costs and increase efficiency of state-owned data centers.
The five-year blueprint for data center transformation includes plans to reduce the number of state data storage facilities from 300 to 200, and to cut annual operating costs from 10 billion to 700 million baht per year.
Moving to cloud-based data centers is a part of this plan, to take advantage of the scalability and flexibility of the cloud, as well as the opportunity to increase efficiency and lower operating costs.
Digital Economy and Society Minister Pichet Durongkaveroj said that an integrated government data center is a crucial element in the development of Thailand’s digital economy, and that data center transformation will help to accommodate the expected ‘massive’ increase in mobile data traffic.
“Building a strong foundation for data centre infrastructure is vital before embracing a digital-driven economy,” he added.
The Electronic Government Agency (EGA) will begin construction of the new cloud data center in March 2018, and it will be completed and operational in 2019. While the details of the project have yet to be determined, representatives from 20 different state authorities will have a say in the project.
The EGA has begun to classify state data into three categories: national security data, important data, and general data. In the initial review, national security data comprises 8% of total data the state is responsible for, while 60% is important, and the remaining 32% is classified as general data.
Breaking down data in this way will allow the government to address different security requirements for different categories, as well as limiting access to certain types of data.
Sak Segkhoonthod, president of the EGA, said that the new data center will be designed with a view to the future of state services and data security, as well as operational efficiency and cost reduction.
The government of Thailand has positioned the country to become a data center hub for the region with a comprehensive Digital Economy Initiative which, among other things, includes plans for every village in the country to be connected by fiber optic cables by the end of 2017.