Vietnam-based telecoms operator Viettel has announced the launch of mobile and internet services in Tanzania, under the brand name of Halotel.
According to a company statement the launch reflects Viettel’s expansion in its tenth market, and to the second biggest economy in East Africa.
In October last year the operator detailed plans to invest $1 billion in a new 3G mobile phone network in Tanzania.
A Reuters report at the time included a quote from the Tanzanian President’s office, “Viettel will invest $1 billion in telecoms and other services in Tanzania, hence making Tanzania the second country after Peru to receive its state-of-the-art telecoms technology.”
Beside 2G services, Viettel’s offerings in this market will bring competitively-priced 3G connectivity to the most remote areas of the country.
“Viettel’s vision is to provide every Tanzanian with a mobile phone and bring communication and information technology to every corner of life of the country. Our entry into Tanzania reflects our belief that when telecommunications services are accessible to everyone, and become a part of everyday life, they can be a driving force contributing to socio-economic development for the country as a whole” said Nguyen Manh Hung, General Director of Viettel Group.
With an initial investment of USD 736 million, after constructing and installing network infrastructure in just one year, Viettel says it has enabled services to all 26 provinces in the country across rural and urban areas while creating more than 2,000 direct and 20,000 indirect jobs.
“With a strong infrastructure comprising 18,000 km of optical cable and more than 3,000 base transceivers, Viettel’s services can cover up to 81% Tanzania’s population. 1,500 villages are now connected for the first time,” the statement continues.
The company has also confirmed that it will also provide free internet connectivity to 450 public schools over the next three years.
Optical cable has been rolled out across various areas of public service delivery including police stations, public hospitals and post offices within the first half of the year.
Viettel’s new investment in Africa follows the rollout of services in Burundi and Cameroon through Lumitel and Nexttel earlier this year, and in Mozambique through Movitel in 2014.
Source: IT Web Africa