June 27, 2013
Reposted from NPR
YANGON, Myanmar (AP) — Foreign companies hoping to tap into one of the world’s final telecom frontiers grappled with lingering political uncertainties Wednesday after Myanmar’s lower house of parliament ruled that licenses for two new cellphone networks should be delayed until a law governing the sector is passed.
The winners of the hotly contested bid were supposed to be announced Thursday, and officials were unable to say if that would change. More…
June 26, 2013
Vehicles drive past an advertising board of Singapore Telecommunications Ltd (SingTel), one of the bidders for the telecommunications licenses, in Yangon.
Reposted from International Business Times
By Sophie Song
With Western trade sanctions lifted, Myanmar is now the investment darling of the world — in addition to Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO) and Unilever (LON:ULVR), IT and communications companies have all set their eyes on the country as one of the last unconquered frontiers of Asia.
With a population of 60 million, Myanmar currently has a mobile penetration rate of 5 percent. Internet penetration is even lower at around 1 percent, according to PC World.
“When was the last time a market of 60 million people fell out of the sky?” said Martin Sorrell, head of advertising and marketing giant WPP Plc, which has invested in media agencies in Myanmar, according to Reuters. “This is one of the last frontiers.” More…
June 14, 2013
Reposted from Telecom Lead
For bagging telecom license, Myanmar received bids from Airtel, Axiata, Digicel, France-Tel, KDDI, Millicom, MTN, QTel, SingTel, Telenor and Viettel.
Myanmar is planning to invite bids for providing Internet services and building a national fiber optic network.
Myanmar has 14,000km of fiber and some 1,800 telecom masts.
Myanmar, which is opening its telecom market for foreign telecom giants, has received overwhelming response from global mobile operator when they started the bidding process for two telecom licenses. More…
June 11, 2013
Reposted from The Wall Street Journal
By SHIBANI MAHTANI And NATASHA BRERETON-FUKUI
NAYPYITAW, Myanmar—Microsoft Corp. MSFT -0.56% on Thursday established a presence in Myanmar for the first time, forming an exclusive partnership with local firm Myanmar Information Technology as the central supplier for all of its products in the emerging market.
The move represents the “first step” in Microsoft’s plans for the market, with the company focusing on distributing its products rather than any manufacturing operations, Jamie Harper, president for new markets in Southeast Asia at Microsoft, said in an interview on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum on East Asia.
“All infrastructure in the country depends on computing power,” said Mr. Harper, who sees opportunities for Microsoft in Myanmar’s large government sector and in business-to-business operations. More…
May 29, 2013
Reposted from Myanmar Times
By Aye Thida Kyaw
Banks in Myanmar will begin allowing mobile banking for domestic remittance in July or August, executives said.
U Tin Maung Htay, managing director for Small and Medium Industrial Development Bank, said domestic banks are in the final stage of preparing for mobile banking – a process that began two years ago – and that they have identified the major hurdles.
“The main problem is telecoms,” U Tin Maung Htay said, adding that networks are unreliable, especially during bad weather, and this could interrupt transactions made over the phone. “We have to make sure poor Internet and phone line connections do not cause payments to be missed. It’s a matter of reputation.” More…
May 16, 2013
Afghanistan is making progress through gains in education, security, health, and infrastructure
Reposted from The Wall Street Journal
By Saad Mohseni
The conventional wisdom about Afghanistan runs something like this: The country is a lost cause. Almost nothing has changed. The people remain backward and thankless, and there is little benefit for the international community to stay engaged in the country’s future.
This is far from the truth. Despite many years of conflict, Afghanistan has exhibited dramatic signs of economic, social and cultural revival. The country has undergone such extraordinary change since 9/11 that a return to the dark period of the Taliban is unfathomable. More…
May 8, 2013
Reposted from Developing Telecoms
By James Barton
The leading telecom provider in the Maldives is implementing a solution to prevent revenue leakage caused by fraud and billing inaccuracies across its mobile and fixed line networks. Dhiraagu is using MACH’s Revenue Protection solution due to its unique “in memory computing” functionality, which substantially reduces the overall time required to detect and stop any type of revenue leakage.
April 5, 2013
Reposted from Bloomberg
By Amy Thomson
Vodafone Group Plc (VOD) and China Mobile Ltd. (941), the two biggest wireless companies, will join forces to bid for mobile licenses in Myanmar as investors and operators jostle to be among the first into the Southeast Asian country.
The licenses would allow Newbury, England-based Vodafone and China Mobile to build and operate a nationwide network for 15 years, they said yesterday in a statement. Myanmar will announce the license winners on June 27, Vodafone said, citing the government’s documentation.
Investors are piling into newly opened Myanmar, which has less than 10 percent mobile penetration among its 64 million people, after the government said it wants to boost telecommunications coverage to as much as 80 percent of the population by 2016. Billionaire George Soros has joined with Digicel Group Ltd. and property developer Serge Pun to bid for the licenses, the trio said in a separate statement yesterday. More…
April 5, 2013
Reposted from The Irrawaddy
A man talks on a mobile phone in the street in Rangoon while a woman makes a call from a public phone shop.
By Thet Swe Aye
RANGOON — Cellphone SIM cards costing as little as 1,500 kyat (US $2) will be available from April 24, state media reported on Thursday.
Initially, 350,000 cards will be distributed throughout the country. Users of the new service will have to spend at least 2,500 kyat ($3) per month in order to keep using the SIM cards.
Tin Win, a resident of Monywa in Sagaing Division, said until now rural communities might share one or two cellphones between an entire village. More…
June 13, 2012
Reposted from the BBC
By Lucy Hooker
“We understand the need for PR,” says Burma’s industry minister, Soe Thein, smiling broadly, and inviting his BBC visitors to orange squash and cakes.
This is true. If any country is in want of an image makeover, it is Burma. More…