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Uzi Zambia is country's fourth mobile phone operator

Uzi Zambia is country's fourth mobile phone operator

Communications and tech Industry regulator sayscompany has pledged to invest over US$350 million and create over 450 direct jobs.

The Zambia Information and Technology Authority (ZICTA) has awarded the country's fourth mobile phone operator license (valid for 15 years) to Uzi Zambia Limited, a company whose major shareholder is Unitel International Holdings B.V., registered in the Netherlands.

ZICTA manager for corporate affairs Ngabo Nankonde said Uzi Zambia has pledged to invest over US$350 million and create over 450 direct jobs to support their operations in the country.

According to Nankonde the process leading to the award of the license was preceded by comprehensive market reviews undertaken by ZICTA between 2015 and 2017.

"The market reviews revealed among other things, the need to deepen competition on the market with a view to attain more competitive pricing outcomes as well as enhance the levels of investment," she added.

However, the regulator has not provided details on when Uzi Zambia was registered locally or the identities of other shareholders, other than Unitel International Holdings B.V.

Nankonde said Unitel International Holdings B.V. has a good track record spanning a period of over 10 years in Angola, Sao Tome and Principle, Cape Verde and Portugal.

The Zambian market is dominated by MTN Zambia with close to 6 million subscribers, followed by Airtel Zambia with about 5 million customers and at the tail end is Zamtel with just 2 million customers.

According to Nankonde Uzi Zambia intends to deploy LTE technology nationally as part of their network which will fully support 4G and 5G technologies. It also plans to establish 100 universal access sites across unserved and under-served areas.

However, it is not yet clear when the company will begin to offer services to the public.

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