Telecoms News - In Brief

Telecoms

- Nigeria's National Telecommunications operator, Globacom, is collaborating with Benue, Rivers and Bayelsa state governments to provide easy and cheap telephone services in rural areas.

- A new satellite system working in conjunction with helicopters and aircraft is to be used to beef up security on South Africa's notoriously porous borders, Safety and Security Minister Charles Nqakula said.

- Reuters is reporting that the government of the West African state of Guinea will seek a new partner for telecoms company Societe des Telecommunications de Guinee (Sotelgui), after Telekom Malaysia International (TMI) returns its 60% stake on 1 September 2008. ‘The government's option is to open up Sotelgui's capital, and seek a partner with sufficient financial and technical capacity that will allow the company to face an increasingly competitive environment,’ Minister for Communications and New Information Technology Tibou Kamara told Reuters in an interview.

- MTN and Zain Zambia have refused pressure from the Communications Authority of Zambia (CAZ) to share network infrastructure, with both operators claiming it would be difficult to maintain quality assurance. The CAZ has been urging the companies to share infrastructure in order to boost the expansion of services in rural regions but MTN and Zain have both stated that they will proceed with individual expansion plans and are not prepared to consider a shared solution.

- Sierra Leone’s state-owned operator Sierratel has begun testing its new CDMA 2000 -based fixed wireless network. The infrastructure is said to complement the company's existing landline service and will have a capacity of 100,000 subscribers.