KT CEO tells farming experts how 5G can help

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KT CEO tells farming experts how 5G can help

KT CEO Hwang Chang-gyu suggested the world use 5G-based digital technologies to increase agricultural productivity and control livestock diseases, during a seminar hosted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Rome, Italy, on Wednesday.

KT also inked a partnership with the UN organization to work together on innovating the farming industry on the sidelines of the conference.

Hwang, in his speech at the Digital Agriculture Transformation Seminar, said big data and 5G-based technologies can and are already contributing to disease control and boosting farming productivity.

While pointing out that some $60 billion is spent every year because of infectious diseases that affect humans and animals, he said KT has been contributing to reducing damages by cooperating with the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention since 2016.

“We created a system that identifies travelers exposed to infection at an early stage and stops the spread using big data,” Hwang said.

The carrier, since last year, has been inviting other countries and international organizations to adopt a similar system using big data, naming the program the Global Epidemic Prevention Platform (GEPP).

Hwang discussed the possibility of increasing farm productivity and livestock safety using 5G-based technologies as well.

He introduced KT’s Skyship, a floating balloon-like structure that KT has been developing to use for emergency relief as well as farm management and pest control.

The ship can be controlled remotely and performs diverse tasks in the air.

He also said KT has been cooperating with Korea’s Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency since 2016 to install GPS on some 50,000 cars transporting livestock to track what environment livestock is exposed to and prevent epidemics.

Based on the carrier’s experience, Hwang suggested Wednesday that countries jointly develop a Livestock Epidemic Prevention Platform, a system similar to GEPP, but focused on protecting livestock.

“Through Livestock GEPP, the risk of infection is informed to livestock workers who visit contaminated farms and the government can monitor and control the potential inflow of epidemics,” Hwang said, promising KT’s full support to those countries attempting to adopt the platform.

BY KIM JEE-HEE [kim.jeehee@joongang.co.kr]
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