191007 elon musk
Elon Musk Image Credit: Reuters

Elon Musk's Starlink will likely roll out its satellite Internet services in the Philippines before yearend, the nation's Department of Information and Communications Technology said.

Starlink, which is operated by SpaceX, is expected to help in President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.'s push to make Internet available in remote areas, ICT Secretary Ivan John Uy said in a statement Thursday.

"This will bridge the digital divide in an archipelagic country like the Philippines where laying fiber cables or establishing cell towers in mountainous areas can be challenging," said Uy, who held a joint briefing with SpaceX executive Rebecca Hunter on Wednesday.

Starlink will not compete with the existing telecommunications providers in the country, but will provide Internet connectivity to underserved areas, Hunter said in the same statement. Starlink got the Philippine government approval in May to build and operate broadband facilities.

The communications and technology agency, in partnership with local governments, will initially cover the cost of the Starlink service in remote areas, according to BusinessWorld. The Starlink kit will carry a price tag of $599 while the monthly service will be $99, the newspaper reported.