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Agreement signed to cover villages and population centers with telecommunications and internet services via satellite

16/08/2020

The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) and Oman Broadband Company (OBC) signed an agreement at TRA head office in Airport Heights to provide telecommunications and internet services to a number of villages and population centers by satellite in various governorates of the Sultanate with the presence of HE Azza bint Suleiman Al-Ismailia, Minister of Technology and Communications. The agreement was signed by HE Eng. Omar bin Hamdan Al-Ismaili, CEO of TRA, and Eng. Badr bin Saud Al-Zaidi, Acting CEO of OBC.
The agreement stipulated that Oman Broadband Company will implement an initiative to cover villages and population centers with telecommunications and internet services via satellite and build the telecommunications network infrastructure in these villages by utilizing the satellite communication services. Oman Broadband Company will also coordinate with the telecommunications companies in the Sultanate that provide fixed internet services to provide the service for subscribers in these villages.
TRA stated that the number of villages and population centers included in the Agreement stood at 598, in addition to the government schools not covered with high-speed internet service. This initiative is part of the efforts made by TRA to spread the telecommunication services across the Sultanate and was preceded by other initiatives in cooperation with telecom operators Omantel and Ooredoo to provide unserved remote villages and rural areas with telecommunications and internet services. Previous initiatives included the construction of 320 telecom towers to cover 450 villages where 95% of which was finalized and work is underway in projects to enhance the coverage approved in 2019 to erect 262 telecom towers for the provision of high-speed mobile internet services under the supervision of TRA and the execution of mobile telecom operators in Oman.
HE Eng. Omar bin Hamdan Al-Ismaili, CEO of TRA said that: “This initiative aims at the provision of telecommunications and internet services to villages and rural population centers in Oman. TRA requested funding from the Ministry of Finance and a sum of RO 15 million was approved to provide the infrastructure for this project”.
Moreover, HE Eng. Omar Al-Ismaili added that the initiative intends to further the implementation of the National Broad Band Strategy the preparation of which was overseen by the Ministry of Technology and Communications to bridge the digital divide between urban and rural areas with the efforts of TRA and cooperation from its partners in the sector represented in the service providers to contribute to the realization of Oman Vision 2040. He also expressed his utmost wishes for the successful rollout of these services all over the Sultanate.  
HE Al-Ismaili also extended his thanks and gratitude to the government of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik represented in the Ministry of Finance which has graciously agreed to fund this project.   


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