US Internet giant Google on Tuesday started building one of its three planned data centres in Asia to meet fast growing online demand from the region, the company said.
"More new Internet users are coming online everyday here in Asia than anywhere else in the world," Daniel Alegre of Google said during a ceremony to begin work on the $300 million, 15 hectare (37 acre) site in Changhua county, western Taiwan.
"They are looking for information and entertainment, new business opportunities and better ways to connect with friends and family, near and far.
"That is why we are building data centres in Asia -- to ensure that our users here have the fastest, most reliable access possible to all of our services, so they can continue putting them to work.
Construction of the two other data centres for the region -- in Singapore and Hong Kong -- started in December and will cost $700 million in total.
Google also has similar centres in the United States and Europe, but none so far in Asia.
The search engine giant has faced stiff competition in Asia, particularly in the China market where domestic search services, including Baidu, are household names to a 485 million-strong internet population -- the world's largest.
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