In order to provide 3G telecom services in Kohistan, Telenor and Universal Service Fund (USF) has signed a Rs3.51 billion agreement. The total cost of the project has been estimated to be Rs4.6 billion, 75.6% of which is being subsidized by the government, whereas the remaining amount would be paid by Telenor.
The Mobile Broadband Internet/3G Service Project
The contract ceremony for the provision of Mobile Broadband Internet/3G services in Kohistan took place at the Ministry of IT, on Wednesday. Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar, Federal Minister of Finance was the key witness of the signing ceremony.
Other key members attending the ceremony included Anusha Rahman Khan, Minister of State for IT & Telecom, Sardar Mohammad Yousaf, Federal Minister for Religious Affairs, and Murtaza Javed Abbas, Deputy Speaker National Assembly.
Ishaq Dar congratulated both the parties for their achievements and efforts to promote telecom services in Pakistan. In addition, he also assured to provide full support to the Ministry of IT and the ICT sector to provide telecom services in all regions of the country.
The Broadband for Sustainable Development project aims to provide rapid pace telecom services in the rural areas of the country. To achieve the purpose, it will need state of the art 3G Mobile Broadband service, said Anusha Rehman.
Benefits of the Project
Covering an area of 11,000 sq. ft, the project will benefit 9 lac residents of 1,283 villages of Kohistan. Additionally, Ms. Anusha said that the project will provide job opportunities, better living standards and will particularly work on women empowerment.
Speaking at the occasion Rehman said:
The current project is a step forward towards prime minister’s vision of a digital Pakistan.
Most important is the aspect that the project will benefit regions of Kohistan (Pattan, Dassu, Palas), Battagram (Alai, Battagram), Mansehra (Balakot, Torghar, Mansehra,Oghi), Haripur (Ghazi, Haripur) and Abbottabad (Abbottabad).
CEO of Telenor Pakistan, Irfan Wahab Khan also shared his thoughts on the initiative. He said that the project is surely a huge step to enable the promotion of IT in the country. Opportunities will knock at the doors of demoted societies to help them take part in the development process. He also added that this project is also another step forward towards Pakistan’s empowerment.