NT to complete 4G expansion work by mid-February

Kathmandu, August 30

The government-owned telecommunications company, Nepal Telecom (NT) is preparing to roll out its 4G network service across the nation by mid-February.

Although the project was delayed in the initial days, the work is now on track and is likely to be completed within the targeted deadline of mid-February, said Dilli Prasad Adhikari, managing director of NT.

“We are gearing up to launch 4G service in major cities outside the Valley from Dashain,” he said. “Looking at the current pace, the remaining work will be completed by mid-February.”

According to him, the service will be provided to 25 major areas outside the Valley from Dashain and by mid-February 4G will be rolled out nationwide.

As per Adhikari, around 70 per cent work of the core network has been completed so far and 45 per cent work has been completed of Network I and Network II. NT has divided the 4G expansion project into three categories — Network I, Network II and Core Network. While the company has awarded the Network I and Network II categories of the project to CCSI, ZTE Corporation has been awarded the contract to develop necessary core network and radio access network for the expansion of 4G or Long Term Evolution (LTE) service.

“Installation of transmission equipment and other network equipment is ongoing and other technical preparations have also been completed till date,” Adhikari added.

As per NT, over 6.5 million subscribers of NT could benefit from the new 4G expansion plan. Along with the expansion of 4G service, NT expects to strengthen its position in the data market.

NT introduced 4G in January 2017, becoming the first telecom company in the country to roll out the service. However, it has not been able to expand the service outside Kathmandu Valley and Pokhara, as the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) launched a probe into the 4G equipment procurement process in February last year, suspecting financial irregularities.

CIAA had given a clean chit to NT in October last year, paving the way for the telecom firm to resume its plans of 4G expansion.