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Saudi Telecom and IT minister directs mobile service providers to ensure roaming services, network in remote areas

Saudi Arabia, January 6, 2018

Minister of Telecommunications and IT Abdullah bin Amer Al-Sawaha has directed all mobile service providers to ensure the availability of local roaming services and network sharing in remote areas.

Al-Sawaha issued the directive based on citizens’ requests after his inspection visit to communities in the Hejer region and various governorates across the Kingdom.

The minister is also the chairman of the Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC), which confirmed that mobile service providers in remote areas must provide local roaming service within a maximum period of 60 days to enable users to obtain coverage in villages, irrespective of the service provider.

They are also required to provide quality service to these areas, in addition to continuity of service and easy access to all basic telecommunications and Internet services.

Highlighting a step forward toward plans to expand broadband Internet services to 70 percent of the Kingdom’s remote areas by 2020, Al-Sawaha announced the completion of the high-speed home broadband network project for Al-Jumoum district in Makkah region, a ministry statement said.

It also marks the digital leap in enhancing e-government services in key sectors such as education and health care.

The project is part of the government’s efforts to develop a digital infrastructure in villages and contribute to the development of an innovative government in the Kingdom.

Moreover, during his visit to Al-Jumuom, Al-Sawaha witnessed the launch of broadband Internet services at speeds of 10 Mbps in the village of Rahat and Muddrika.

Speaking on the occasion, Al-Sawaha said that the ministry is eager to activate partnerships with the private sector to encourage investments in developing the digital infrastructure to ensure the best quality services to members of society.

As part of the ministry’s efforts to extend seamless connectivity throughout the Kingdom in line with the National Transformation Program and Saudi Vision 2030, communication and Internet services have been provided to more than 4 million residents in over 17,000 communities in the regions of Northern Borders, Jouf, Hail, Tabuk, Qassim, Riyadh, Madinah, Makkah, Eastern Province, Asir, Baha, Najran, and Jazan.

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