Wednesday, 08 April 2020

Saudi Arabian telcos go open access for FTTH

by Harry Baldock, Total Telecom
Tuesday 25 February 20

At the behest of the national regulator, six major Saudi Arabian telcos have signed an open access agreement to share each other’s network infrastructure

Broadband choice in Saudi Arabia just got a whole lot broader, as six of the country’s biggest telcos announce an open access deal to share their fibre networks.   STC, Mobily, Zain, Etihad Atheeb Telecom…

Broadband choice in Saudi Arabia just got a whole lot broader, as six of the country’s biggest telcos announce an open access deal to share their fibre networks.
 
STC, Mobily, Zain, Etihad Atheeb Telecom, Integrated Telecom Company, and Integrated Dawiyat have all signed on to take part in the initiative at the request of the government’s Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC).
 
“The adoption of an open-access model will increase the use of our fibre-optic infrastructure through the development of commercial agreements that make it easier for subscribers to move from one provider to another,” said Mohammed Al Tamimi, governor of the CITC.
 
The scheme is expected to result in an additional three million FTTH customers, allowing them access to any of the selected providers. 
 
The news of this agreement comes alongside the announcement that Saudi Arabia’s internet penetration rate has reached 93%. 
 
While this scheme does not seem directly related to the Saudi Arabian government’s National Transformation Program, also known as ‘Saudi Vision 2030’, it certainly helps facilitate its wide range of social, technological, and economic goals, including improving living standards and access to high speed internet. 
 
With a FTTH penetration rate of 41.8%, Saudi Arabia can boast a significant lead over most of Europe, which averages just 13.1% penetration. 
 
 
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