Raja Pervaiz Asharaf, Federal Minister for Information Technology in a statement said that USF has recently awarded projects for providing basic telephony and data services in Mastung Lot (Balochistan) and broadband services in Southern Telecom Region-V (Sindh). He further said that through the Rural Telecom Project in Mastung, basic telephony and data services will be provided to a population of 74,831 people which resides in 102 unserved muzas of Balochistan. This Lot consists of Mastung, Nushki and Ziarat Districts. He praised the USF team for following Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) rules throughout the bidding process.
He also stated that Universal Service Fund has been very actively running projects for providing ICT related services in Balochistan as well as rest of the provinces. So far, rural telecom projects for Pishin, Nasirabad and Mastung Lot which aim to provide basic telephony and data services in around 1,062 unserved muzas are benefitting a population of 791 thousand. Similarly under another programme, 44 unserved tehsil headquarters along with 29 towns will be connected through optical fiber cable benefitting more than 5 million population.
During chairing the 28th USF Board Meeting, Minister IT also approved launch of 5 New Projects of rural telecom for next fiscal year 2012-13, namely Kech, Kalat, Panjgoor, Sibi and Zhob Lots in Balochistan province. He also approved launch of three new projects of Broadband programme for Western Telecom Region (Balochistan), Northern Telecom Region I and II (KPK), and lastly he also approved the launch of optical fiber cable project for KPK Province.
USF has made immense progress under the present Government. In Rural Telecom Programme, USF has provided basic telephony and data services in more than 3,600 unserved muzas. Broadband services have been provided in 256 new 2nd and 3rd tier cities/towns along with providing more than 400,000 broadband connections while establishing more than 1000 Educational Broadband centers (EBCs) and 300 community Broadband centers (CBCs). Under Optic Fiber Programme, more than 4,200 kms of new optic fiber cable has been laid to connect 58 un-served tehsils and towns. To take broadband internet to the villages, USF has launched another Program namely establishment of Universal Telecenters (UTCs). With these achievements, USF has created a success story for the public-private partnership entities nationally and internationally.