Saudi Arabian telco Etihad Etisalat (Mobily) has won a SAR50 million (USD13.3 million) contract to begin work on an exploratory project for the Communications and Information Technology Commission's (CITC) Comprehensive Service Fund. Mobily was reportedly the only contender to have passed all of the evaluation criteria necessary to win the contract. The project aims to provide voice telephony and broadband connectivity to residents of Khulais and Al-Kamel in Makkah province, and Mahd Al-Dhahab in Madinah province.
Abdulrahman Al-Jaafari, governor of CITC commented: ‘We are working toward implementing the directives of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah to carry out comprehensive development throughout the Kingdom, with a long-term strategic outlook for the economy. We want to play our part in achieving balanced and sustainable progress and bridge the developmental gaps between regions.’ Mobily CEO Khalid Al-Kaf added: ‘The fact that we own the region's biggest broadband network will definitely help in providing quality services to remote areas, so we can enrich the lives of residents with services that exceed their expectations’. Despite being better known as a wireless operator, Mobily has shifted its attentions towards broadband in recent years, after acquiring a pair of ISPs since 2007. Its Saudi Arabian infrastructure now reportedly includes a 12,000-km fibre optic network.