by Delly Bagu – EM TV, Port Moresby
Telikom PNG will soon have even broader coverage, with the rollout of 500 additional towers throughout the country.
Minister for Public Enterprise and State Investmen’s, Ben Micah, told EM TV today that the Exim Bank funds of US$300 million is now on draw down, and through the contractor Huawei, 500 additional Telikom towers will be put up across the country.
Mr Micah said these towers will complement Telikom’s existing assets.
“This is to ensure that coverage is extended and competition is provided [to] the market so that we can have better quality to the telecommunication sector.
And also that we have reliability and that prices can also be reduced through much better competition between the state-owned telecommunication companies and private sector provider like Digicel,” Mr Micah said.
He added that DataCo, another company owned by the state through IPBC, will in due course assume control of backbone assets like the undersea cables, terrestrial networks and the LNG fiber network.
“All of that will now be transferred to DataCo… Hopefully this will strengthen both DataCo as a business and Bemobile and Telikom as retail businesses to compete with the major private sector player in telecommunication, which is Digicel,” Mr Micah said.
With the acquisition of Media Niugini Limited, Minister Micah said Telikom is now fully integrated in the telecommunication industry from providing telephone network services, mobile phones, internet services and now, media.