Unitel STP, which was awarded Sao Tome and Principe’s second national telecoms licence in March 2013, has launched commercial mobile services. Back in May, the first call was made on the new network by the country’s president Manuel Pinto da Costa and prime minister Gabriel Ferreira da Costa, at which date Unitel was reported to have invested around USD30 million in the rollout of its wireless infrastructure, which comprises around 22 base transceiver stations (BTS) and a switching centre. The company’s Facebook page indicates that a variety of pre-paid tariffs are on offer, with data plans priced at STD200,000 (USD10.9) for a monthly allowance of 1GB or STD300,000 for 2GB. Unitel STP is a subsidiary of Unitel International Holding, itself backed by Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos. It has ended the monopoly held by Companhia Santomense de Telecomunicacoes (CST), a joint venture between Portugal Telecom (PT) and the government, since its establishment on 1 January 1990.
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