The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has said that it is set to award the first two of seven regional infrastructure company (InfraCo) licences in the next two weeks. The Daily Independent quotes NCC executive vice chairman Eugene Juwa as saying that the two permits will cover Lagos State and the North Central Zone, allowing for the deployment of metropolitan fibre-optic infrastructure and associated transmission equipment on an open access, non-discriminatory and price-regulated basis. As outlined by the regulator’s ‘Open Access Next Generation Fibre Optics Broadband Network’ paper, which was published late last year, the InfraCos will be responsible for providing a national broadband network to service providers. The NCC says that the Open Access Model for fibre-optic network deployment is best suited to bridge the digital divide, facilitate the development of local content, and deliver fast and reliable broadband services to households and businesses. It is expected to help address the challenges of fibre deployment in towns and cities, promote infrastructure sharing and reduce right of way issues.