Government cancels Smart Telecom Mid-Hill Highway contract

22 Oct 2019

Nepal’s government-led project to lay fibre-optic cabling along the Mid-Hill Highway has failed to make any real progress despite being initiated more than three years ago, reports The Himalayan Times, noting Nepal Telecom (NT), Smart Telecom and United Telecom (UTL) have all missed project deadlines. Nepal’s telecoms regulator, the Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA), has now taken the step of cancelling Smart Telecom’s contract to lay 2,500km of fibre-optic cable in Provinces 6 and 7, awarded in September 2017, as the company had only installed 20km of cabling.

The NTA previously cancelled a contract awarded to UTL in April 2017 after the company failed to initiate work on the project in Gandaki Province and Province 5, while NT has only recently begun work in Provinces 1, 2 and 3 following a series of delays.