Ethio Telecom has been awarded the “International Europe Award for Quality” for this year in recognition of its commitment to the quality of business management. Ethio Telecom, CEO, Andualem Admassie received the award in Paris, France.
Global Trade Leaders’ Club, an association of leading businesses with more than 7,500 members from 95 different countries handed over the award to the state monopoly, Ethio Telecom under the category of service sector. The recognition was given based on the recommendations of member companies in industry and service sectors.
“During the event, the CEO stated that Ethio Telecom has been actively engaged in organizational restructuring and infrastructural expansion. Efforts are also being exerted to expand services even to remote areas” Andualem explained.
The telecom company currently provides mobile telephone service to approximately 50 million subscribers targeting to boost this to 113 million in the second Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP II). Broadband internet data subscription is expected to grow to 39 million from the current 1.4 million. Mobile internet data coverage doubled from just 8 million while overall internet data coverage is predicted to triple to 10% from the current 3.3% in over five years.
During the first GTP, the sector was short of its target to reach 50 million mobile subscribers. Similarly the $1.6 billion network expansion project launched under GTP I has not yet been completed due to delayed negotiations with ZTE and Huawei Technologies. The telecom enterprise has awarded parts of the networking project to Ericsson, which won several projects back in December 2014. The Swedish telecom company, Ericsson is the first to develop mobile infrastructure in Ethiopia. It had installed mobile networks in Addis Ababa for 19,000 subscribers. Ericsson has been operating in Ethiopia for long since Emperor Menelik II’s era when Ethiopia introduced landline phones for the first time.
Developing 4G and 3G networks for the capital city and regional towns is part of the infrastructural development projects. The 4G wireless connectivity, developed by Huawei, has already started service in Addis Ababa. It has accomplished majority of its expansion structures in Afar, Amhara, Harari, Tigray, Somali and Dire Dawa. The mobile telephone network expansion in the capital has nearly been completed. The remaining expansion projects are expected to be completed in the coming year says Ethio Telecom.
“It’s time for technology and it has changed the way business is done. Ethio Telecom has been remarkable in developing infrastructures and catching up with the latest technology,” Alexander Burtenshaw country manager of Jovago Ethiopia said. The huge potential is t proven as international companies such as Jovago, Kaymu, Everjobs and Lamudi have expanded to Ethiopia.
On the other hand, the award for Ethio Telecom is hard to swallow for residents who are facing slow internet and mobile network connectivity. Daniel Girma who is doing his BA degree at Addis Ababa University smiled when Jovago asked him for a comment about the Ethio Telecom award.
“I believe the telecom company has done so much to earn this international award but as an individual struggling to get good connection to do research for my school work, I still believe that Ethio Telecom has a long way to go to satisfy all of its customer’s demand of uninterrupted connection.” Daniel said.