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Bringing the communication lines underground in Bangkok will start next month


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The National Broadcasting Corporation plans to take Bangkok’s notoriously tangled overhead communications cables underground starting next month.

Trairat Wiriyasirikul, acting secretary-general of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission, said the NBTC considers moving the overhead cables on Bangkok’s roads a priority.

The operation will start in February in partnership with the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and the Metropolitan Electricity Authority. The communication lines with a total length of about 400 kilometers hanging from power poles above Bangkok’s roads will be moved underground, Trairat said.

Reports of tangled lines of communication in Bangkok often made negative headlines when foreign celebrities took their photos and shared them on social media, prompting the Thai government to pledge to address the issue.

Last October, Hollywood actor Russel Crowe, who was in Thailand to film a movie, took a photo of Bangkok’s communications cables and posted it to his Twitter page with the caption: “Bangkok dreams…”.

In 2016, Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Bill Gates posted a photo and commentary on the tangled cables on his Facebook page, but he later apparently deleted the post for inaccurately identifying the lines of communication as power cables.

Trairat said that upon completion of the operation in Bangkok, the NBTC would begin moving communications cables totaling some 2,000 kilometers underground in the provinces. The NBTC will cooperate with the Provincial Electricity Authority to handle the cables in the provinces.

He said the entire project could take three years.

 Once all lines of communication go underground, the country would look tidy in line with Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha’s policies, Trairat added.

He said the NBTC had decided at its January 21 meeting to provide financial support for the operation, following a November 23 cabinet resolution to address tangled overhead communication lines.

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