Huawei Technologies has reportedly deployed the first of 169 base stations that will be rolled out to provide mobile voice services to rural communities in Zambia, according to AllAfrica. As previously reported by CommsUpdate, Zambia’s government will spend around USD24 million on a project being implemented by the Zambia Information and Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA) which, once complete will mean that most rural parts of the country should have access to a mobile network. With more than 200,000 people expected to benefit from the work, the expansion programme is expected to be finished by the end of 2014.
It is understood that the first tower was officially launched on 17 April at Matanda in Luapula Province, while under the project all ten of the country’s provinces will gain new infrastructure as follows: 21 towers to be built in Central Province; 11 in the Copperbelt; 23 in Eastern Province; 19 in Luapula; two in Lusaka; 12 in Muchinga; 19 in Northern Province; 26 in North-Western Province, 21 in Southern Province; and 15 in Western Province. Of the total, 57 towers will be serviced by local fixed line incumbent Zamtel, which operates in the sector via its Zamtel Mobile subsidiary, while cellcos MTN Zambia and Airtel Zambia will each take responsibility for 56 towers.