Afghanistan’s Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT) has awarded WiMAX licences to three operators to increase the availability of internet access in the nation. Neda Telecom, IO Global and Arianna Network Services were each awarded a licence for a fee of USD520,000. The MCIT said in a statement that between 20% and 30% of subscribers to telecoms services currently have access to the internet, though with the issuance of the trio of WiMAX licences, and the allocation of 3G licences earlier this year the ministry hopes to increase access to around 80% of the population within two years.
Telecom minister Amirzai Sangin added: ‘to change Afghanistan into [an] advanced technological and e-government country, implementing of advanced technologies is necessary and provides great facilities to the residents of the country. 3G and WIMAX technologies [will] provide fast internet services for the people of Afghanistan.’