Universal Service Fund (USF) and Ministry of Information Technology (MoIT) have approved that modern broadband services will be provided to the unserved areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, spanning an area of more than 100,000 sq km.
The project, Kohistan lot, will cover 1283 unserved Mauzas of Kohistan, Batgiram, Mansehra, Haripur and Abbottabad districts. The board and Ministry were briefed about the bidding process. The contract under Broadband for Sustainable Development Project for Kohistan Lot has been awarded to the telecom service provider, Telenor.
Mrs. Anusha Rahman, Chairperson USF Co Board and the Minister of State for IT & Telecom, chaired the 50th Board of Directors Meeting. She was briefed about the existing Projects of USF pertaining to the establishment of Telecenters, USF Small Lots Project and Broadband for Sustainable Development Project.
Established by MoiTT, USF works to provide broadband and other telecom services throughout the country, especially in the rural areas. All licensed telecommunication companies contribute a part of their revenue to the fund for this purpose. Awaran-Lasbela broadband project was announced in November 2016 and the contract worth Rs 2.33 billion was given to telecom service provider, Ufone, earlier this year to provide 3G services to underserved areas of Balochistan.
USF Broadband for Sustainable Development (BSD) Program was launched to improve broadband penetration in the unserved areas and to boost e-services. It works on filling the digital divide by providing ICT access to masses through affordable broadband.