Vietnam is putting considerable effort into modernization and expansion of its telecommunication system, but its performance continues to lag behind that of its more modern neighbors. Domestically, all provincial exchanges are digitalized and connected to Hanoi, Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City by fiber optic cable or microwave radio relay networks. Main lines have been substantially increased, and the use of mobile telephones is growing rapidly.
Two satellite earth stations are in use: Intersputnik (Indian Ocean region).
The government controls all broadcast media exercising oversight through the Ministry of Information and Communication. The government-controlled national TV provider, Vietnam Television, operates a network of 9 channels with several regional broadcasting centers. The programming is relayed nationwide via a network of provincial and municipal TV stations. Vietnam law limits access to satellite TV, but many households are able to access foreign programming via home satellite equipment.
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Although basic Internet services had existed in Vietnam since the early nineties, the first commercial Internet Service Provider (ISP) opened for business in 1997. Since 1997 Vietnam has been connected by two gateways: one in Hanoi which connects with Hong Kong and Australia, and the other in Ho Chi Minh City, which connects with the United States by Sprint.
Internet usage remains low in comparison with that of other Asian nations, yet connectivity has increased rapidly over the past few years, thanks to an initiative by the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications.
There are five ISPs operating: Netnam Company, Vietnam Data Communication Company (VDC), Corporation for Finance and Promoting Technology (FPT), Saigon Post and Telecommunications Services Corporation (Saigon Postel Corporation, SPT) and Viettel Company.
|Year||Users||Nat Prop (%)||International Bandwidth (Bit/s)||Domestic Bandwidth (Bit/s)|
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