Licence fees to be agreed in South Sudan

18 July 2011 |


Following its independence, South Sudan is reportedly in talks with Zain Sudan to pay a fee to extend its licence to the newly formed nation.

The subsidiary of Kuwaiti carrier Zain will continue to operate as usual in South Sudan until the new licence is agreed. Out of the country’s population of eight million, only one million are estimated to own mobiles phones – a figure Zain expects to treble within the next two years.

According to Reuters, Zain is planning to expand 3G services in the South through an investment of approximately $110 million during 2011.

South Sudan officially became an independent state on July 9 2011 following decades of conflict with the north, leading to the death of an estimated 1.5 million people. Despite being oil rich, the country is one of the least developed in the world.

The new nation was assigned its first international dialling code by the International Telecommunication Union last week. The dialling code is 211; representing the year in which it gained independence.

Dr Hamadoun Touré, secretary general of ITU said: “A country code may seem like a small thing, but it is a real signifier of sovereignty and independence. We join with the international community in congratulating the government and people of South Sudan on achieving full nationhood.”

“As a young developing country there will be challenges, but the power of modern connectivity will bring a tremendous boost in areas such as commerce, health and education,” he added.