World VoIP NewsOrascom targets subscribers in the millions for North Korean unit
Orascom targets subscribers in the millions for North Korean unit
Egypt-based telecoms group Orascom Telecom has announced its North Korean subsidiary CHEO Technology, which operates under the Koryolink brand, has signed up 100,000 subscribers in its first year and expects to add millions more in the next five years, the Financial Times reports.
‘We see that there is a very big plan for an economic boom,’ commented Khaled Bichara, chief executive of Orascom, adding, ‘They are really looking to have, by 2012, a much stronger economy. We believe that mobiles and eventually international communication will definitely be part of this.’ Bichara also stated that the subscription figures show that mobile phones are not limited to elite members of the military and communist party, although the handset price of USD195 places wireless services out of the reach of the average citizen. Koryolink currently offers only a basic voice and SMS service. International calls and roaming are not provided but the Orascom chief executive said starting such services would not be difficult given the sophistication of the network being installed.
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