Solomon Telekom Company (Our Telekom) has announced that it is deploying a further seven 3G towers in Malaita province, which will be put into commercial service soon. The telco’s assistant manager Jimmy Nange told local press that the new 50m towers will provide much needed access to mobile internet, TV and other telecoms services to people living in those rural areas. According to Nange, the construction of the towers themselves has already been completed and they only await the final network connection. ‘As soon as the networking installation is complete then we will launch them,’ he said, adding that they should be online before Christmas. Mr Nange noted that as a result of the latest 3G rollout, the firm has taken the total number of towers installed in the Malaita area to more than 30.
Our Telekom is 100% locally owned. In October 2014 UK-based Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC) agreed to divest its 32.577% stake in the operator to its joint venture partner and majority shareholder, Solomon Islands National Provident Fund (SINPF), which already held 64.740% of the telco’s shares. The transaction realised total cash proceeds of approximately USD16.5 million and marked CWC’s effective exit from the South Pacific region, having already sold off interests in Vanuatu and Fiji. The remaining 2.683% stake in Our Telekom is held by the Investment Corporation of the Solomon Islands (ICSI).