Telecom's Sector Recent Achivements

 

Mobile phone Services

  • By the successful plans and strategy of Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT) since 2003 through the end of 2011, 86% of residential areas have been taken under telecommunication and information coverage.
  • To date, there are 18 million mobile phone users in the country.
  • Approximately 1.7 billion US dollars have been invested in telecommunication sector by the end of 1390 have been.
  • The revenue of telecom sector to the state was 165 million dollars in 1390.
  • In telecommunication and technology sector 100,000 individuals, including professionals, non-professional, businessmen, and telecommunication equipment vendors are provided job opportunities.

GSM ASOSSIATION GLOBAL AWARD

Ministry of communication and information technology of Afghanistan with properly designed and effectively implementation of its policies and because of rapid improvement and good governance of telecommunications services in the country, gained the GSM Association the Global Leadership Award for 2011. And it was presented to the Minister of Communication and Information Technology Mr. Amirzai Sangin on behalf of the Afghanistan government.

 OPTICAL FIBER NETWORK

  • The introduction of fiber optic network in the country, which has reduced the cost of telephone considerably.
  • Twelve provinces have been fully connected to the fiber optics network
  • The work to extend the fiber optic network to further twenty provinces is progressing well
  • The expansion of fiber optic network to the southern provinces of Logar, Paktia, Khost, and Paktika which will be completed this year.
  • The extension of fiber optic network to the central and north eastern provinces of Bamian, Daikondi, Ghor, Takhar and Badakhshan , the work has started this year and it is planned to be completed in two years.
  • Afghanistan has now been connected to the neighboring countries such as Pakistan, Iran, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. The fiber optics network will be connected to Turkmenistan in the near future.
  • So far $65 million has been invested in fiber optic network in Afghanistan.
  • Currently the monthly revenue from fiber optic network is $55 million per annum.

 

AFGHAN TELECOM

  • Afghan Telecom is the first public company, which was established in 2005.
  • Afghan Telecom provides fixed line, mobile telephone and internet services.
  • The revenue of the company was 2.11 billion AFN and total expenditures were 1.5 billion AFN in 2010.
  • The revenue of the company was 3.3 billion AFN and expenditures were 1.49 billion AFN in 2011.

INTERNET SERVICES

  • 50 Internet companies have been issued licenses to provide internet services.
  • High speed internet services of DSL have been activated in six major provinces.
  • About two million people or 8% of the population in the country have access to the internet services.
  • The price of internet services via satellite was 5000 USD for one MB in 2002, but by the introduction of fiber network such high price has been reduced gradually to 300 USD for GSM & ISPs operators
  • MCIT announced the cost of one MB internet service for 300 USD in 2012, and has recently announced the cost of one MB internet for 97 USD, further reduction in the price of internet services is in the pipeline.

 

INFORMATION COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY INSTITUTE (ICTI)

  • The old telecommunication Training Center (TTC) has been converted to a degree awarding institution which is called Information and Communication Technology Institute (ICTI). ICTI has been training engineers for the telecom and IT sectors.
  • The first and second cohort of 34 and 62 students were graduated from ICTI during the last two years. Fortunately, most of the graduates have found suitable employment in their fields.

 

POSTAL SERVICES

  • There are 464 Post Offices through the country.
  • Beside National postal services, seven private companies have been licensed to provide postal services.
  • Afghanistan Postal Regulatory Authority (APRA) has been established to regulate and control the companies which provide postal services in the country
  • The total income 112 million AFN or 2.24 Million USD has been generated by the postal services during the last fiscal year.

AFGHANISTAN TELECOMMUNICATION REGULATORY AUTHORITY (ATRA)

  • ATRA has been established with main aim to control and monitor the services which is provided the telecommunication and IT companies.
  • ATRA is issuing the licenses and to telecommunication and IT companies operating in the country.
  • ATRA is taking action against companies and individuals who misuse telecommunication services.
  • ATRA has generated 80 Million AFN or 1.6 Million USD from companies and individuals who violated the telecom regulations.
  • ATRA has seized 49 illegal SIM Boxes which were operating illegally in the country
  • Over sixteen companies which provided telecom or IT services without proper licenses have abandoned. Legal action is taking place against such companies.
  • ATRA is controlling and filtering the immoral use of internet services provided by 44 internet companies and 68 internet clubs.

MEDIA

  • ATRA has been issuing licenses to companies which provide radio and television services.
  • Currently there are 65 television channels in the country, including 32 in the capital 33 in the provinces.
  • The number of radio stations in the country is 174 in the country, including 47 in the capital and 127 in provinces.
  • About 21 television and 27 radio companies are still waiting for the final approval
  • Because of lack of radio and television frequency spectrum, no further licenses will be issued in the immediate future
  • MCIT in collaboration with the Ministry of culture will introduce tough guidelines for the broadcasting companies.

COVERAGE AREA

  • Currently 85% of residential areas of the country is under coverage. We intend to cover 95% area by Telecommunication Development Fund (TDF) in 1393. The fund is established for developing telecommunication service in rural areas and villages.
  • Telecommunication companies pay 2.5 percent of their income to the Telecommunication Development Fund.
  • The TDF fund has grown to 74 million USD so far.
  • More than 55 sites in country will receive the services which will be subsidized by TDF in the next two years.
  • 100 additional sites are planned to be built in near future with the main aim to introduce telecom and internet services to remote areas.
  • We intended to bring all remote areas under coverage of telecommunication service within coming three years.

3G SERVICE (THIRD GENERATION)

  • The aim is to provide the broadband services via new 3G technology to all around the country.
  • The process of issuance license for operators which offer 3G services has started. Three licenses have been issued to operators such as Etisalat, MTN and Roshan. The cost of each license has been 25 million USD which have credited to the Ministry of Finance.
  • It is planned to issue another 3G license to AWCC too.
  • We plan to increase the users of 3G from 8% to 50% within next two years.

ELECTRONIC IDENTITY (ID) CARD

  • Electronic ID card is a document that cannot by forged and helps to reduce or eliminate corruption. ID card may also lead to transparency in the election process.
  • To the Electronic ID project, following steps have been conducted:
  • The agreement between the Ministries of interior and MCIT has been accepted by cabinet.
  • MCIT will provide technical support of Electronic National ID (e-NID) project.
  • The Ministry of Interior affairs will implement this proposed project.
  • Advanced technology will be used to establish the system of e-NID.

ELECTRONIC GOVERNMENT

The aim of E-Government is to provide better service, improve live level of people and establish strong efficient and transparent government. The following aspects of E-government will be very important for Afghanistan:

  • Establishing ICT
  • Treatment from distance
  • Learning from distance
  • Information Technology programs for farmers.

DIGITAL TELEVISIONS

  • It is planned to convert the present analogue TV system to digital TV system.
  • Broadcasting television programs to remote areas will be easy when digital technology is used.

SATELITE

  • Afghanistan has been allocated a specific slot in the orbit which can used to place a satellite.
  • We plan to lease that slot where companies can place a satellite in that location.
  • Bidding process has started and it is anticipated that we sign a contract with suitable company in the next six months
  • Once the contract has signed, work on the satellite project may be completed within two next years.