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Myanmar Confirms Plans to Award Two Telecoms Licenses this Year

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The Myanmar Burma government has formally announced plans to award two telecoms licenses later this year, breaking the monopoly enjoyed by the state owned operator.

The awarding of two licenses is part of a government policy to boost the development of the country's telecommunications and ICT industry.

The main goals are to increase the overall teledensity of the country to 75% to 80% in 2015-2016, to make the telecommunications services available to the public at affordable prices, and to give the public the capability of choice for the telecommunications services.

The license details are still being worked out but are expected to be between 10-20 years in duration and will come with a minimum geographical coverage requirement.

The licenses will be awarded by a beauty-contest method as opposed to auction.

Submissions of interest for the tender have to be submitted by the 25th January.

State-owned Myanma Posts and Telecommunications (MPT) is the main telecommunications operator in the country. Yatanarpon Teleport (YTP), a joint venture between local private companies and the government is primarily an Internet services Provider.

The country currently has both GSM (900 MHz, launched in 2002) and CDMA networks (800 MHz and 450 MHz launched respectively in 1999 and 2008). In 2008, 3G (WCDMA 2100 MHz) was also introduced.

According to the latest official data, as of end of December 2012, the current mobile base is 5.44 million subscribers equivalent to just  9% population penetration. 3.62 million or 67% of mobile subscribers are using GSM, 0.74 million or 14% are using WCDMA, 1.1 million or 20% are using CDMA.

On the web: Ministry of ICT

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Tags: burma  Myanmar