Telecoms News - In Brief

- Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority (TCRA) has given new licences to four national service providers. This type of license will give room to the licensee to provide to end users a range of electronic communication services including, among others, payphone services, Internet, video conference, voice, data, Voip, multi-media and calling cards to end users. The four companies are Clear line Communications Tanzania Limited, Hotspot Business Solutions (T) Limited, Wavetek Communication Tanzania Limited and Benson Informatics Limited

- According to local newspaper, Mmegi, the Botswana Telecommunications Corporation's (BTC) is preparing a redundancy plan as part of its privatisation process. BTC has in excess of 1,000 employees and some employees may end up unemployed when the corporation finds a strategic partner. In 2003, when the company was coming out of the restructuring exercise, about 600 employees lost their jobs after recommendations by consultancy firm, Irish Development Agency (IDI).

- Every South African company licensed to provide telecommunications or broadcasting services has just 30 days to apply to convert its licence to the new format introduced by the Electronic Communications Act. The act has restructured the licences held by companies ranging from giants such as Telkom and the SABC right down to internet service providers and the tiny telecoms operators in rural areas.

- Etisalat aims to take a 30% share in the huge Egyptian telecoms market within five years, CEO Mohammad Hassan Omran told Gulf News. The company plans to use new technology, better tariffs and new services to tap the country's potentially lucrative mobile phone market, which currently has a penetration rate of only 20%.

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