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USF Spends Rs. 56 Billion in Telecommunications Development are Still Areas Without Service: Report

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The Universal Service Fund (USF) spent around Rs. 56013 million to date, but some of the unserviced and underserved areas in Balochistan and in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa districts of South Waziristan and Kurram, do not yet have access to basic telephony and mobile broadband.

USF was created in 2007 to expand the services of cellular telephony, broadband internet, fiber optics and other telecommunications services to unattended or unattended areas. All telecommunications companies contributed 1.5 percent of their revenue to the fund.

Officials have revealed that USF has more than R’s. 32 billion in balance and spending Rs. 56.418 million over the past ten years for expanding telecommunications services to the under-serviced and under-serviced areas of the country.

USF Spends Rs. 56 Billion in Telecommunications Development are Still Areas Without Service: Report

USF Spends Rs. 56 Billion in Telecommunications Development are Still Areas Without Service: Report
USF Spends Rs. 56 Billion in Telecommunications Development are Still Areas Without Service: Report

USF officials insisted that despite massive growth, there were many areas that remained unattended. They said the challenges faced by the USF were steep terrain, sparse population, adverse weather conditions, lack of electricity, back haul and poor logistics, as well as clearance security. Some of these include South Waziristan, North Waziristan, Orakzai, Kurram Jhal Magsi, Dera Bugti, Nasirabad and Jaffarabad which are not addressed.

According to the sources, the areas not compatible with the business plans of the telecommunications operators, the government subsidizes the projects to reach the unguarded and unguarded.

According to the documents, of the total of Rs 56,013 billion subsidies, Ufone has a large part of the subsidy, ie Rs. 17.12 billion (30.5 percent), PTCL-Rs. 14.66 billion (26 percent), Telenor – Rs. 12,787 million (22.8 percent), Zong-Rs. 4,550 million (8.1 percent), Wateen-Rs. 3,717 (6.6 percent), World Call – Rs. 1.134 million (2 percent) and Mobilink – Rs. 382,145 million (0.68%).
The telecommunications coverage was about 44 percent before the USF launched in 2006-07, which has reached about 75 percent over the past 10 years, while covering 6,225 muzas.

One official said the USF Broadband for Sustainable Development program was designed to offer telecommunication services to mauzas not served throughout the country. Following the issue of 3G / 4G federal government licenses, this program was redesigned to include equivalent broadband data services (internet) as a compulsory component.

For the new projects, the power of the telecommunications site through solar power has also become part of every project. According to the documents, 844 BTS was installed and 6225 mauzas were covered.

The fiber optic program is another USF initiative aimed at promoting the development of telecommunications services in under-serviced and under-serviced rural areas to allow affordable voice, telephony and basic data services. It also requires the establishment of a stable and reliable fiber optic network in every corner of the country.

This project aims to extend fiber-optic connectivity to the Tehsil headquarters without service to meet the growing voice, data and video requirements in these areas.

Expanding fiber cables to tehsils helps telecommunications service providers expand all types of telecommunications services to those areas. It’s like building information highways for all tehls. Under this program, 6,447 km of optical fiber are installed, while 56 tilts and 26 cities are connected.

Within the framework of special projects that they launched various initiatives, including ICT for girls, setting up 13 computer labs in selected institutions that allow people with disabilities to use telecommunications services, network and telemedicine services, the establishment of telecommunications centers and the empowerment of artificial SMEs through e-commerce.

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