Swedish-backed cellco Ucell invested UZS300 billion (USD135.92 million) into the development and expansion of its network in 2013, local paper Uzdaily writes, citing the company’s director general Osman Turan. In addition to its network upgrades – which included the rollout of Dual Carrier (DC)-HSPA+ in August 2013 – the cellco has overhauled its offices in Karshi, Qoqand, Navoi and Tashkent. Turan added that the operator is one of the largest tax payers in the country, contributing more than UZS280 billion to the state’s coffers.
In related news, Uzmobile, the wireless arm of fixed line incumbent Uzbektelecom says it installed 140 new base stations in 2013, increasing coverage of its CDMA450 network to 71%. According to the director general of the operator Abdurashid Abdumuminov, Uzmobile will install 201 new EV-DO-enabled base stations and upgrade a further 114 existing towers with the technology in 2014. The USD17.47 million project is expected to increase the network’s footprint to 85%. Uzbektelecom will also continue to roll out fibre-based accesses (FTTx) in 2014, and plans for the infrastructure to pass 110,000 homes and businesses by the end of the year.