The Iraqi Communications Ministry awarded GSM mobile phone licenses to three consortia; one led by Egypt’s Orascom Telecom (OT) and the others to groups led by Asia Cell and Atheer Tel. All three groups include Iraqi firms and the second two involve Kuwait's Wataniya Telecom and MTC.
OT will be involved in building Baghdad and central Iraq’s mobile network; MTC's consortium will establish the infrastructure in southern Iraq and Wataniya Telecom will be responsible for the north.
Iraq presents huge business prospects for telecom companies. With the telecom network in shambles, the only mobile communication currently available in Iraq is via satellite through Thuraya handsets.
In the next three years, Iraq's mobile phone subscribers are expected to increase to five million. A judicious selection of telecom infrastructure and cellular technology will therefore be crucial to the success of the project of putting Iraq back on the cellular map. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )