Incumbent operator Uganda Telecom (UTL) has predicted steady growth in the country’s fixed line sector for the next four to five years. In an interview with AllAfrica.com the telco’s head of marketing, Hans Paulsen, expressed his optimism for the upcoming period, based on the company’s USD125 million investment in mobile, data and internet infrastructure over the last four years. Paulsen claims that UTL is stepping up its network expansion to rural areas of the country, utilising CDMA-based WiLL technology to provide both voice and data services. He also reported that the rollout of UTL’s Sim4U payphone service was proceeding on schedule, with 3,000 payphones currently being installed, and added that local telephony rates were now thought to be the cheapest in east Africa. Uganda, with a population of over 25 million, had around 82,000 fixed lines in operation at the end of 2004, up 25% in a year, with a teledensity of 0.3%.