The Egyptian government has started steps to raise the efficiency of basic communications services in the Sinai Peninsula.
Egypt's National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA) is financing the construction and operation of mobile phone towers for 30 urban areas and four vital roads of up to 112 km at a total cost of EGP 513 million (US$ 32.6 million), provided that the services operate by the end of June 2022.
"The money that comes from the Universal Service Fund (USF) – sum collected each year from operators and directed towards the financing of national telecom coverage projects – will be used for the construction of cell sites in 30 urban areas, as well as 4 roads main areas in the governorates of North Sinai and South Sinai," it said.
“This step is in line with the role of the NTRA to regulate and disseminate telecommunications services throughout the Arab Republic of Egypt, with the aim of strengthening national and social correlations and contributing to economic growth,” said the NTRA, according to the Ecofin agency.
This is part of a continuing programme by the Egyptian government to improve people’s access to telecom services, with an emphasis was placed on rural areas and roads.
NTRA explained that, as part of its role in following up the quality of telecommunication services, an impact on the quality of telecommunication services was monitored in some areas and roads in the Sinai Peninsula.
Consequently, a limited tender was launched by the companies licensed to establish and operate mobile phone stations to increase efficiency and increase coverage. Nearly 90 mobile phone towers in the areas and roads were established and operated, including the areas of St. Catherine, Ras Sudr, Al-Tur, and Nuweiba.
NTRA had earlier launched and financed projects to establish, operate, and provide mobile phone services for 54 urban areas and 22 strategic roads across the country, with a total length of 3100 km and a total cost of EGP 1.668bn.