South Africa-based multinational mobile telecommunications company, MTN is set to deploy superior performance for wireless networks, especially 4G LTE services, including the roll-out of broadband internet services across Nigeria, after the telecoms giant was awarded a 10-year 2.6 GHz license by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).
“NCC, on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria, hereby informs stakeholders that MTN Nigeria Communications Limited who emerged the sole preferred bidder in the licensing process on the 2.6 GHz Spectrum and therefore issued letter of provisional award provisioned on the payment of specified fees for the Spectrum have made the payment.” Read the statement signed by Tony Ojobo, DIrector of Public Affairs at NCC.
MTN has subsequently been awarded the license in line with the provisions of the Information Memorandum guiding the auction process after the telecom giant paid the fees estimated to be just over USD65 million specified for 2 x 30 MHz in the 2.6 GHz Spectrum.
“This licence acquisition further demonstrates MTN’s abiding faith in the future of Nigeria and the resilience of the Nigerian economy,” MTN Nigeria CEO, Ferdi Moolman said after the announcement was made in Abuja. “MTN continues to believe in Nigeria and we have expressed this belief in the level of our investment, which currently stands at approximately $15 billion and counting.” He added.
MTN Nigeria, the country’s largest mobile operator, with over 57 million subscribers, has already indicated, following this development, its plans to begin deploying fast internet connectivity across the country. Nigeria, with over 46% of its population with access to the internet, penetration of 4G (or LTE) speed connectivity remains very low.
“Our subscribers, especially those in clustered areas such as the major cities, can expect distinct improvements in browsing speed, quality and experience. This means that they will have fast access to high definition video streaming, as well as conferencing and calling, lag-free music streaming, and improved data uploads and downloads.”
Mr. Mooman expressed delight at the development, noting that it is coming just a few months after his company was embroiled in negotiations with the Nigeria’s regulators. The latter fined the mobile service provider over USD5 billion for failing to registers its subscribers as required by the law.