Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, January 26:

Nepal needs to jockey the advantages of broadband technology to provide its rural areas with basic telephony and also to improve the quality of services, experts opined.

While addressing a gathering of telecom experts, secretary of ministry of communication and information and chairman of Nepal Telecom, Mukunda Sharma Poudel stressed on the need for ‘broadband’ technology for Nepal. He commented that in rural area, telephone services have to be expanded to serve the interest of the people. He expressed his commitment for better telecom services in rural areas and for necessary policy reform to be competitive in the market, as advanced technologies have already spread across the globe. Alcatel is emerging as the best multinational for advanced telecom products whose reliability has been proved following its long presence in Nepal, Vishesh Gupta, assistant vice-president (sales and marketing) Indian Private Operators and Nepal of Alcatel India Ltd, said. Alcatel, the world’s largest telecom company, which has been in Nepal for over 22 years, is getting popular day by day, thanks to its user-friendly technology. Alcatel, spread over 130 countries, has acquired more than 54 per cent market share of telecom products globally, senior officials of the company said.

In Nepal, Alcatel has more than 65 per cent market share in fixed telephone lines and in India, it has over 50 per cent market share, according to him. Alcatel has already made available of 3.7 million calls last week here, he disclosed. Sugat Ratna Kansakar, chief of Nepal Telecom (NT), also spoke about broadband’s importance for Nepal. As a public enterprise, NT has to serve rural areas and the interest of people. He informed that of the total rural population, over 40 per cent people have not seen a telephone.

Gupta spoke about Alcatel’s global performance. Of the total sales revenue of the company, 13 per cent has been spent on research and development that has helped the company to update its technologies and to offer better products, said Gupta. Similarly, Ravi Sharma, president and CEO of Alcatel South Asia expressed happiness over the presence of Alcatel products in Nepal for a long time. Its increased market share in Nepal has been encouraging for Alcatel, informed Sharma. Sharma showed interest to help Nepal adopt new technologies for telecom sector’s growth.