Palestinian territories to get 3G mobile in 2016

The Palestine territories of the West Bank and Gaza are likely to get 3G mobile services for the first time, after a deal between Israeli and Palestinian authorities.

Services should be available in late 2016, according to reports from the West Bank, citing the Palestinian Authority.

Reuters reported that Paltel and Wataniya, the two operators serving the two parts of the Palestinian territory, are expected to spend $150 million developing 3G services. Until now they have had only 2G, though Israeli operators have long offered 3G and now 4G.

“The use of fast internet, especially in the mobile sector, will contribute greatly to increasing GDP,” Palestinian telecoms minister Allam Moussa told Reuters.

There are 4.6 million people in the two Palestinian territories. Under the interim peace accords Israel regulates the mobile spectrum available in the territories. Observers expect services to be launched in the West Bank first, though they believe there will be considerable delay before 3G can be extended to Gaza.

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