- France's principal telecom services provider, Alcatel, has won a US$ 100 million contract to provide Libya with an updated mobile services network. Almost the entire vast Libyan territory is to be covered by the new infrastructure by 2005. The Libya contract also constitutes a major UMTS deployment in Africa.
Alcatel in a statement today announced that it had signed "a major contract" with Libya's state-controlled General Post and Telecommunication Company (GPTC) for the supply of GSM/EDGE and 3G/UMTS infrastructure and services in the North African country. This contract, which was said to be "worth within the scale of US$ 100 million," was to increase "Alcatel's leadership in Libya," the Paris-based company said.
Under the terms of this contract, Alcatel is to supply GPTC with its Evolium mobile radio access and core network solution to service some 2.5 million mobile users throughout 75 percent of the Libyan territory. Furthermore, Alcatel was to develop and integrate for GPTC "a complete portfolio of attractive mobile services" to be run throughout the operator's network over the whole country.
This network deployment, which is due to be completed by the end of 2005, builds upon the existing GSM/EDGE infrastructure already deployed by Alcatel for GPTC in 1996. "With this new contract, Alcatel will enable the operator to dramatically extend its current GSM/EDGE footprint while deploying a brand new UMTS network in a single stage," the French company says.
The services package delivered to GPTC will enable the operator to "provide Libyan citizens with a wealth of high-quality mobile services, including mobile video telephony and conferencing, online games, live TV over mobile, a 3G video portal, video messaging, webcam access, live sporting events and instant messaging services," according to Alcatel's promises to the Libyan operator.
This network further was to extend access to telephony in the country, covering areas that were so far underserved, with an additional number of over one million mobile users covered by the network.
- We are very pleased to conclude this contract with Alcatel who has been our long-standing partner in Libya, declared Mohamed Moammar Al Gathafi, Chairman of GPTC. "GPTC will pioneer the UMTS technology in Africa and position Libya as the frontrunner in the development of Africa's telecommunication landscape," Mr Al Gathafi added.
GPTC is the national operator which provides fixed, mobile and internet related services throughout Libya. Given the large size of the country, GPTC performs its duties in a very geographically diversified frame. Most of Libya's territory is uninhabited desert lands.
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