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Etisalat Granted Afghanistan’s First 3G Licence

in Afghan Business

Etisalat Granted Afghanistan’s First 3G Licence

Private telecom company Etisalat Afghanistan will launch Afghanistan’s first 3G network after signing an agreement with the Afghan government on Monday.

Afghanistan’s Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Amirzai Sangin, said Etisalat was the first company to receive a 3G licence, but a further four licences would be issued “in the future” to other telecom companies.

There are five private telecom companies operating in Afghanistan.

Etisalat paid US$25 million for the licence, according to Sangin.

“Afghanistan will earn around $100 million annually through 3G services”, he said.

Sangin, who signed the agreement with Etisalat in a ceremony at the Ministry of Communications & Information Technology in Kabul, said the new 3G service would enable telecom companies in Afghanistan to provide users access to high speed internet in their mobile phones and to multimedia services.

Etisalat Afghanistan chief executive, Ahmed Alhosani, said the agreement was an “auspicious moment” for telecommunications in Afghanistan.

“Today’s 3G launch by Etisalat marks an evolution in mobile communications and significant progress only made possible through a strong public-private partnership,” he said in a statement released by the company.

Around 4 percent of Afghans have access to internet services, the Afghan Ministry of Communications and Information Technology said. But this agreement is the beginning of more Afghans having access to high speed internet connections, distributed through the mobile phone companies.

Etisalat Afghanistan is part of the United Arab Emirates-based Etisalat Group, which also has operations in Africa, the Middle East and South-East Asia.

Tags assigned to this article:
3G in AfghanistanEtisalat Afghanistan

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