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Partnership kicks off Puerto Rico 5G Zone initiative

Celeres Capital, an investment and advisory firm based in San Juan, announced that Puerto Rico has secured a leadership role in communication technology with the launching of the 5G Zone initiative. 

The project is primed to enable companies, government entities, and academia to test applications and develop new uses for 5G networks, securing Puerto Rico’s future success, organizers said.  

The Puerto Rico 5G Zone is a public-private partnership established through a memorandum of understanding between Celeres Capital and the Indiana 5G Zone, along with the public and private sectors, and academia.

Its purpose is to develop a 5G innovation center for test and development of next generation technologies leveraging 5G including resilient energy, smart manufacturing, smart agriculture, cybersecurity and national security. 

“Improving the capability, reliability, and resiliency of Puerto Rico’s communications infrastructure is critical to a number of economic sectors and the quality of life for the people of Puerto Rico,” said Rear Admiral Peter Brown, President Trump’s Special Representative for Puerto Rico’s Disaster Recovery.

“The Trump Administration is working hard to bring pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturing back to Puerto Rico in larger scale, and communication connectivity is vital to those industries and many others. Attracting new businesses and technologies will also be enhanced with the innovations of new 5G networks and possibilities,” he said. 

Two additional areas where quality of life can be significantly improved for the people of Puerto Rico include distance learning and telemedicine, “which have had significant access challenges for remote and rural communities,” he said. 

The Puerto Rico 5G Zone will aim to attract companies and government entities by offering a secure lab and test-bed environment to de-risk 5G investment, executive said.

The Puerto Rico 5G Zone stands to benefit from the expertise of the Indiana 5G Zone team, the first 5G public private partnership led by a state, said Kurt Pfluger of Celeres Capital.

Indiana’s 5G experience provides Puerto Rico with a proven blueprint to follow in the development and operations of its program. Strategic 5G uses include advanced manufacturing, resilient energy, intelligent logistics, digital agriculture, national security, and public safety.

The partnership between Indiana and Puerto Rico underscores a shared commitment to making the U.S. and its territories a leader in 5G tech, he said.

“Indiana has done great work in establishing best practices in different verticals deploying 5G services. We’re excited to share those experiences with the Puerto Rico 5G Zone,” Pfluger said.

Celeres Capital is partnering with the stakeholders to create opportunities for 5G in Puerto Rico and LATAM where advanced manufacturing, energy resiliency and IoT are economic development priorities.

The Puerto Rico 5G Zone will allow the island to better leverage its human capital and become a hub for tech in Latin America, project representatives said. According to the Puerto Rico Information Technology Cluster, the island graduates 10,000 scientists, engineers, and IT professionals each year.

“That an undertaking of this magnitude is taking place in Puerto Rico speaks volumes of the island’s capabilities to support businesses in a variety of sectors, including business, industry, academia, R&D, and others,” said Rodrick Miller, CEO of Invest Puerto Rico (InvestPR), the island’s public-private partnership for economic development.

“The Puerto Rico 5G Zone not only validates our forward-looking approach to economic development, it also showcases our commitment to leveraging the power of strategic partnerships to create opportunities that really push the envelope in terms of the real-world applications of cutting-edge tech,” he said

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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