Pakistani mobile operator CMPak (Zong) plans to spend approximately USD500 million on increasing the number of base stations it has in operation to approximately 9,000 by the end of 2009, according to The Daily Times. The reports claims that Zong plans to double the number of cell sites it has in certain areas of the country, and claims that the project is one of the largest undertaken in Pakistan. Zong’s parent company, China Mobile, has already invested around USD1.66 billion in its Pakistan unit to date, USD600 billion of which was spent in the second half of the 2008-2009 fiscal year alone. As well as the infrastructure expansion, Zong is expected to increase the number of sale and service centres nationwide; at present it has an estimated 45,000 such centres.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, at the end of March 2009 Zong had 5.5 million subscribers, more than double the 2.14 million it had a year earlier. Despite the impressive growth however it remains fifth-placed in the country’s wireless sector in terms of market share, with 6.08% at that date.