Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) has set aside more than LKR750 million (USD6.6 million) for immediate investment in expanding its wireline, fixed-wireless and broadband internet coverage in the Northern and Eastern provinces, the incumbent’s chairwoman Leisha De Silva Chandrasena told the island’s Daily News Business. SLT plans to continue a programme of increasing capacity and coverage of copper wireline, CDMA-based wireless in the local loop (WiLL) and ADSL broadband networks in the areas where military conflict was ended earlier this year, whilst also rolling out WiMAX-based wireless broadband connectivity. SLT currently has over 50,000 fixed lines, 80,000 CDMA connections and around 3,500 broadband customers in the Northern and Eastern provinces, after adding a respective 1,500, 11,000 and 2,000 new subscribers since June this year. De Silva confirmed that WiMAX services would be launched by the end of December to extend the reach of SLT’s network to all areas. The telco increased its nationwide broadband subscriber base from less than 100,000 at the start of January to 150,000 during the first nine months of 2009.
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