Myanmar suffering from tower shortage

18 Sep 2014

Telenor Myanmar faces challenges in installing enough towers to meet its capacity needs, Eleven Myanmar cites the newcomer’s CEO, Peter Furberg as saying at the Myanmar Connect Forum. The Norwegian-backed operator previously set its sights on a September 2014 launch, but may miss that target, having run into difficulties in installing infrastructure. Nevertheless, SIMs are due to go on sale ‘soon’, with Furberg noting that Telenor has subcontracted two firms to install 200 towers. Telenor’s investment in infrastructure will total around USD1 billion, the official added. Senior officials from incumbent Myanmar Post and Telecommunications (MPT) and Yatanarpon Teleport (YTP) echoed Furberg’s comments that more towers are needed. MPT general manager Khin Maung Tun said that it was sharing its tower infrastructure but more towers were needed, adding that any poor quality of service (QoS) experienced by customers was not a result of tower-sharing. Meanwhile, YTP executive Nilar Aye highlighted a shortage of funds and expertise as major stumbling blocks in rolling out services to Myanmar’s population: ‘We have had some difficulties because we transformed YTP into a public company. We have to negotiate with overseas telecommunication companies to help our network penetrate rural areas’.