Mobile subscription rates have been growing for over a decade worldwide. There are now huge opportunities in developing countries like Ethiopia where mobile phones are now becoming more affordable than ever before. This has become the driving force between Ethiopia’s largest network and the Chinese phone manufacturing company ZTE signing an $800m deal.
The deal will see Ethio Telecom expand their current subscriptions rates to a projected 50 million, aiming to also include 4G services in certain areas, with 3G being available nationwide. This will see them double their current subscribers and vastly improve the access to mobile internet in the country, where only 1% can currently do so.
The head of Ethio Telecom Andualem Admassie said “The expansion is vital to attain Ethio Telecom’s objective of increasing telecom service access and coverage across the nation, as well as to upgrade existing network to new technology”.
The $800m deal is only half of the current project in the country. Half is made up in partnership with ZTE and the other half in competing Chinese company Huawei.