Bangladesh telecom rating falls, but digital plans on track

Plans to transform Bangladesh into a digital country by 2021 are gaining traction after the Bangladeshi government announced plans in September 2010 to implement seven projects at a cost of BDT64.34bn (US$923.75mn). Research & Markets reports that the seven projects will focus on rolling out next-generation technologies such as broadband wireless and fibre optic cable networks in order to improve Bangladesh's inadequate broadband infrastructure. The key objective is to lower operating costs and provide affordable broadband services to the population through the unification and standardisation of the country's broadband networks.
Operators continued to increase the value-added services offerings to mitigate declining mobile revenues. Banglalink signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Agriculture Information Service and UNDP-supported Access to Information Programme in September 2010 to educate and create awareness among farmers through the use of telecoms and information technology tools. Under the MoU aimed to enhance technological support to Bangladesh’s agricultural sector, Banglalink would deliver beneficial information to all the stakeholders. The operator also announced a partnership with mobile VAS developer Comviva in October 2010. Comviva will deliver mWallet services that will enable Banglalink to offer integrated financial payment services such as mobile transactions, international and domestic remittance, utility payments and mobile ticketing.
Bangladesh’s Telecoms Rating fell to 46.5 from 47.6 in the previous quarter due to a decrease in the country’s Industry Rewards score, which fell back to 50 from 52.5. There were no changes to the Bangladesh’s Country Rewards, Industry Risks and Country Risk scores. Nevertheless, the country fell to 15th place from 13th place.

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