By Abdi Ali
Published October 15, 2015
A Vietnamese state-owned mobile network operator announced its launch of mobile and internet services in Tanzania.
The new service, under the brand name of Halotel, is the 10th market for Viettel Group that is operated by Vietnam’s Ministry of Defence.
Beside 2G services, Viettel says its offerings in this market “will bring competitively-priced 3G connectivity to the most remote areas of the country, empowering…areas through connectivity, and offering mobile services as a basic commodity.”
“Viettel’s vision is to provide every Tanzanian with a mobile phone and bring communication and information technology to every corner of life of the country. Our entry into Tanzania reflects our belief that when telecommunications services are accessible to everyone, and become a part of everyday life, they can be a driving force contributing to socio-economic development for the country as a whole,” said Nguyen Manh Hung, General Director of Viettel Group.
Viettel says its initial investment of US$736 million, after constructing and installing network infrastructure in just one year, has enabled it to provide service across all 26 provinces in Tanzania “while creating more than 2,000 direct and 20,000 indirect jobs. With a strong infrastructure comprising 18,000 km of optical cable and more than 3,000 base transceivers, Viettel’s services can cover up to 81% Tanzania’s population. 1,500 villages are now connected for the first time.”
The company says it will “provide free internet connectivity to 450 public schools over the next three years” besides providing “optical cable to 150 committees, 150 public hospitals, 150 police stations and 65 post offices within the first half of the year.”
Viettel’s new investment in Africa follows the rollout of services in Burundi and Cameroon through Lumitel and Nexttel, respectively,in early 2015 and in Mozambique through Movitel in 2014.