GSM, 3G services soon: ministry
KABUL (PAN): The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) has said it intends switching to GSM technology from CDMA-based mobile phone services in order to bring down calling rates.
The ministry said the telecommunication system in Afghanistan had been based on the Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA).
The introduction of the new system would help create a positive environment for competition among different telecommunication companies, it said.
Nasrat Rahimi, the ministry spokesman, told Pajhwok Afghan News calling rates would be reduced by one afghani within a network and two afghanis to other networks.
He said the Afghan Telecom, a telecom company offering fixed line, wireless voice and data services under a 25 year license in Afghanistan, earned $40 million a year in revenue and the income would increase by a three-fold after the system was changed to GSM (Global System for Mobiles) technology.
He said the Afghan Telecom would launch soon the third generation information technology system 3G.
According to the ministry, more than 18 million people in Afghanistan have access to mobile phone services in 85 percent areas of the country.
So far, three private companies have obtained a license for 3G cellular networks in Afghanistan, but have not been able to provide mobile services at insecure areas of the country.
The Afghan Telecom recently signed a contract with a Chinese firm worth 32 million US dollars (1.7 billion afghanis) on providing 3G and GSM equipment as well as the installation of an additional 700 telecommunication towers in remote areas.
3G is an improved cellular system that is able to provide high-speed internet, face-to-face video calls, better coverage and numerous other services for mobile phone users.
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.