Four of Tanzania’s main telcos have been approved to provide services to 112 underserved districts, according to local website Daily News. Vodacom, Airtel, Tigo and Tanzania Telecommunication Company Ltd (TTCL) are to receive subsidies totalling USD9.6 million from the Universal Communications Service Access Fund (UCSAF); USD7.6 million of which is allocated for improving network access in 102 poorly-served wards spread across the country, while the remaining USD1.5 million is to be invested in upgrading/implementing telecommunications services in ten districts in border areas and special zones. Under the contract, signed on 21 April, Vodacom has been assigned 38 wards to cover, Tigo received 47, TTCL gained 19 and Airtel has eight. Professor Makame Mbarawa, minister for communication, science and technology, commented: ‘This is a good progress towards our goal of universal telecommunication service in the country. We hope next time more wards, perhaps 300, will be covered.’
TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database notes that various rural network expansion contracts were awarded in Tanzania throughout 2013 and 2014 – most recently, TTCL acquired a USD6.1 million contract in February last year, and Vodacom won a tender in April 2014, both under the UCSAF, for the provision of telecoms services to underserved areas of the country.