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Zamtel comes out swinging

By , ITWeb’s Zambian correspondent.
Zambia , 29 Mar 2017

Zamtel comes out swinging

Zambia's smallest mobile phone operator, the Zambia Telecommunications Company (Zamtel) says it has now exceeded its 1.5 million customer target and that it is now chasing the 2 million customer mark before the end of this year.

The announcement of Zamtel's growth comes only a few days after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) dropped its demand to have the operator sold as part of the condition for it to issue a US$1.3 billion loan to the Zambian government towards economic recovery.

Acting Zamtel CEO Sydney Mupeta said yesterday that the 1.5 million mark is a launchpad for Zamtel to the envisioned position of being the leading telecommunications service provider of choice.

Mupeta said the growth of the company has come as a result of the financial support the company is receiving from the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), the Ministry of Communications and Transport and the Ministry of Finance.

He said Zamtel has also managed to attract many new customers because of recently launched All Networks Tariff promotion, which allows subscribers to call other networks cheaply.

Mupeta said the telecommunications industry requires constant innovation, creativity, and capital investment to meet the ever evolving customer need.

To support the required level of innovation and creativity, he said Zamtel will soon be rolling out infrastructure to support data-hungry innovative products and services to make them more accessible in both rural and urban areas.

"To grow out data customers, in the last three years we had rolled out an additional 543 3G sites and we have started rolling out 4G sites to enable Zamtel network ultra-high speed data services. This is in addition to many 2G and 3G sites that will be dotted across the country," Mupeta said.

He added that Zamtel has also partnered with China's Huawei Technologies to expand the 3G network so that it can accommodate more traffic to improve the quality of user experience.

According to Mupeta, so far the expansion works have been completed from Kitwe to Chililabombwe and that equipment for the rest of the country is still being manufactured by Huawei.

Last year, the government transferred management of Zamtel to its investment arm, the IDC, in a bid to quickly source investment required to recapitalise the company.

It is not yet clear as to whether the government will confirm Mupeta as the full-time CEO of the state-owned firm following the resignation of Dr. Mupanga Mwanakatwe last month.

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