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WIOCC shareholder Zantel Tanzania has set aside $70 million (Tsh 110.74 billion) to expand its network to rural areas.

Zantel’s CEO, Mr Ali Jarsh said that their rural areas investment plan aimed at boosting wireless communication technology, 3G, mobile broadband and internet services networking. “This will see Zantel earn 20% market share in the next two years from the current 7%,” Jarsh said. Jarsh said that the two-year investment plan would enable the mobile phone operator to increase its existing two million subscriber base in Tanzania by a further six million subscribers. “We are expecting the investment would enable Zantel to achieve its target of controlling 20% market share in the next two years, equivalent to an increase of 13%,” he said.

According to Mr Jarsh, Zantel has already invested over $150 million (Tsh 237 billion) in the mainland since it started operations in the country. “We have charted out strategies to make sure that we narrow the market gap with other competitors in the mobile phone industry as well as internet services,” he explained. Besides network expansion plans, Zantel has also reduced tariffs to enable its subscribers to enjoy calling each other with affordable rates.

The company’s CCO and SVP for the Etisalat Group, Mr. Ahmed Mokhles said that the offer was designed to offer maximum value over voice, data and SMS and reduce prices of making calls. “Apart from free calls and reduced SMS tariffs in SMS, we are now offering free 50MB for internet users in a move that aims at taking the telecom industry to a new level,” he said.

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