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Musk launches SpaceX’s Starlink internet services in Indonesia

Tech billionaire Elon Musk (2nd left) speaks next to Indonesian Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin (left) during a ceremony to inaugurate the Starlink satellite unit at a community health center in Denpasar, on the Indonesian resort island of Bali, May 19, 2024. Musk launched his Starlink service on the Indonesian resort island of Bali on May 19, as the country aims to expand the internet to its remote areas. Millions of people in Indonesia, a vast archipelago of more than 17,000 islands, are currently not connected to reliable internet services. (Photo by SONNY TUMBELAKA / AFP) (Photo by SONNY TUMBELAKA/AFP via Getty Images)

Sonny Tumbelaka | Afp | Getty Images

Elon Musk has launched SpaceX’s Starlink satellite internet services in Indonesia, as the Southeast Asian country seeks to boost internet connectivity in remote areas.

The inauguration took place on Sunday at a community health center in Bali, with the SpaceX founder telling local media he was “very excited” about bringing internet services to areas with limited connectivity or non-existent and that Internet connectivity can be “a lifeline for remote medical clinics.

“It’s really important to highlight the importance of internet connectivity and how life-changing and life-saving it can be,” Musk told local media on Sunday.

SpaceX, which manufactures and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft, is also a developer of Starlink satellites that provide internet connectivity to remote locations. Starlink is already available in Southeast Asia, Malaysia and the Philippines.

Indonesia, the world’s largest archipelago with more than 17,000 islands, faces an urban-rural connectivity gap, where millions of people living in rural areas have limited or no access to Internet services.

Minister of Communication and Information Technology Budi Arie Setiadi previously said Starlink would help Indonesia expand internet access to areas not covered by local internet providers, according to the news agency Indonesian Antara.

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The minister also tried to allay concerns that Starlink’s entry could harm local internet providers.

“When you have access to the Internet, you can learn anything,” said Musk, who is also CEO of the electric car maker. You’re here. “But if you don’t have an Internet connection, it’s very difficult to learn.”

“And if you want to sell goods and services to the world, and even if you are in a remote village, you can now do it through an Internet connection. So you can bring a lot of prosperity to (remote) communities,” says Musk.

When asked if he was also considering investing in Indonesia’s electric vehicle sector, Musk said he was focusing on Starlink first.

“It is very likely that my companies will invest in Indonesia,” Musk said.

Indonesian Minister Luhut Pandjaitan said Musk was considering setting up an electric vehicle battery factory in the country, after the tech leader met with President Joko Widodo on Monday, according to Reuters.


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