Cloud data centre in works for Bangkok
A new government cloud-based data centre will be constructed in Bangkok early next year, helping the state integrate critical data and create a pool of internal resources to use data assets more efficiently.
Construction of the data storage facility is scheduled to start by March 2018 and is expected to be completed the following year, said Digital Economy and Society Minister Pichet Durongkaveroj.
The development is part of the government's draft five-year strategic plan involving modern data centre transformation. The plan was passed at a public hearing in April.
Mr Pichet said the ministry also plans to reduce the 300 existing data centres for state agencies occupying a combined 36,000 square metres of space to cut down on operating costs through redundancies and enhance data management.
"We expect to have only 200 state data centres by 2022, and aim to cut annual operating costs from 10 billion baht to 700 million baht," he said.
The Electronic Government Agency (EGA) will carry out construction of the new centre. But construction costs and the size of the facility are yet to be determined.
Mr Pichet said that having an integrated government data centre is one of the most crucial elements in the development of the country's digital economy and will 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 said.
Representatives from 20 state authorities will thrash out the details for the cloud data centre project.
EGA president Sak Segkhoonthod said an initial action plan for the government data centre will take into account the future of state service ecosystems, data security, operational efficiency, cost optimisation, scalability and the data revolution.
Cloud-based data centres offer significant cost savings and greater scalability and flexibility.
The EGA has initially classified all state data into three categories: national security data, important data and general data. Regarding state data, 8% is classified as sensitive information or national security data, 60% is considered important data and 32% is general data.
The consolidation process will have to take the categories of data into account, especially when it comes to third parties such as the private sector helping manage state data in the general category.
Sensitive and important data for some state agencies tends to be managed by the EGA with support from state-owned TOT Plc and CAT Telecom.