Iraq permits operators to launch 3G services

07 May 2014 | Sophie Donoghue

Iraq has allowed the three mobile operators in the country to launch 3G services.

The decision to allow operators Zain Iraq, Asiacell and Korek to use 3G frequencies was made by the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers, and it reverses an earlier decision to hold a multimillion dollar spectrum auction.

Earlier this year, sources reported that the government had planned to auction 3G licences for a minimum of $307 million each, which operators opposed claiming it would damage their ability to roll out 3G services quickly.

In 2007, the three operators had to pay $1.25 billion for 2G licences.

Iraq is still reliant on 2G, however last September vendor Ericsson announced plans to provide LTE to the country in partnership with Iraqi internet and communications provider Tishknet.