Iran’s Minister of Communications says a significant budget has been set aside for launching the so-called “National Internet” and it remains one of his ministry’s top priorities.
Mahmoud Vaezi said: “The National Information Network (National Internet) is a formidable undertaking, and our government has allotted a large budget to it and will realize it after 10 years of talks.”
He reported that the network will undergo its trial stage in the province of Qom. After one and half months, once all its glitches are worked out, it will be offered to other provinces.
The Iranian government cites cyber security and the promotion of internet-based business as reasons to launch a national internet.
Meanwhile, the ministry announced that it has begun “smart filtering”, which is a kind of selective censorship of internet material as opposed to the blocking of entire websites.
Many social networking websites such as Facebook and Twitter are blocked in Iran, and Iranian users must use proxies to access them.