Fibre optic cable: Wateen lands Balochistan project
Wateen Telecom Ltd has been awarded a Rs2.4 billion project to develop an optical fibre network in Balochistan. The project, a joint collaboration between the Universal Service Fund (USF) and Wateen, entails the laying of over 1,100 kilometres of an optical fibre network in northern Balochistan.
Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, speaking as the chief guest at the contract signing ceremony on Wednesday, underlined the significance of telecommunications and information technology in making the world a global village.
Gilani described the USF optic fibre cable project as an important initiative on the part of federal government as it ensures telecommunication services in various parts of the province. The PM said that under this programme about 5,500km of optic fibre will be laid in Balochistan connecting 44 tehsil headquarters and 29 smaller towns in the province besides creating job opportunities for the local youth. “Four of these five Rs7.1 billion projects are already under execution and the last one is being signed today which will benefit about 5.2 million users after completion,” Gilani said.
The new optical fibre network will connect 20 unserved cities and towns, including Gulistan, Musakhel, Barshor, Duki, Harnai, Ziarat, Sinjawi, Zhob, Sherani and Qamardinkarez, a Wateen press release said. It also said that the project aims to provide state of the art digital infrastructure in the remote areas of Balochistan
Along with the Prime Minister, Governor Balochistan Nawab Zulfiqar Magsi, Chief Minister Nawab Aslam Raisani, Federal Information Minister Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan, and other key dignitaries were all present at the event.
Wateen’s press release also stated that it is already working with USF on four broadband and three optical fibre projects in underserved areas of Balochistan, Sindh and Punjab, with subsidies worth a total of Rs2.8 billion. It further stated that these existing projects entail optical fibre networks spanning over 3,300km and 94,500 broadband subscribers, 246 education broadband centres and 72 community broadband centres.
Commenting on the project, Wateen CEO Naeem Zamindar said, “The Balochistan Project is the first step in this long journey towards achieving nationwide connectivity – a journey that will change the lives of many Pakistanis for the better. We are proud to be leading this monumental and historic effort.”
WITH ADDITIONAL INPUT FROM APP
Published in The Express Tribune, July 14th, 2011.
Fibre optic cable: Wateen lands Balochistan project – The Express Tribune