KT and Rwanda Development Board (RDB) entered into a memorandum of understanding to set up a LTE joint venture. Though company size and share ownership are still in discussion, KT plans to launch efforts to set up a network in the African country this year. The Korean firm will be charged with the overall management of the joint venture such as providing technical support and transferring operational expertise while the Rwanda government will support business operations.
The LTE network will be established at a national level. Local mobile carriers and Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) will be able to provide LTE services over the LTE network to be built up by KT. One KT official said, “As we will set up LTE network across the country, the size of the business will be huge,” adding, “It will connect various classes and local communities with ultra-high-speed wireless network.” The company didn’t specify expected amount of revenue from this project.
Both sides are also scheduled to discuss forming a joint venture that would specialize in system integration (SI) and information & telecommunication system, which is expected to accelerate the growth of small and medium-size enterprises in Rwanda. Patrick Nyirishema, the Director General of RDB in charge of Information Technology, said, “The planned LTE network will bring not only Rwanda but other African countries a step closer toward greater development.”
Meanwhile, the Korean telecom giant has been engaged in a wide range of IT projects there: In 2008, it set up backbone, which can be called infrastructure in wired and wireless communications, across the African country following establishment of a Wibro communications network in 2007; in 2010, the company set up a nationwide optical cable network; and since 2011, the company has been providing the management and counseling services with regard to the communications network.